Saturday, October 1, 2011

Cake Pop Tips

The Rooster is out doing whatever guys do when they all get together in mass. So I'm taking the time to start the blog that many of you have requested I begin. I've decided to start with something that for reasons I don't quite understand I've become known for - Cake Pops. You can figure out how to make these by looking at any number of blogs. However, here I will attempt to give you some of my tips, based on a whole lot of trial and error. Be warned, cake pops are not for the faint of heart. The batch I will show you below took 4 hours, and despite my best attempts they are far from perfect. That said, they are unique little peices of art that are, most importantly, really tasty. These cake pops, for example, were created for a co-worker's birthday in one of her favorite colors.

Here's what you need:
One Cake Mix
One Jar Icing
6 Inch Candy Sticks
2-3 BagsWilton Candy Melts
4x6 Inch Clear Treat Bags
Styrofoam To Dry Finished Cake Pops

Bake the cake according to the box directions, and let cool. Tip #1 I slightly under cook the cake, and don't always let it cool completely. I like to live dangerously. Crumble the cake in a large bowl.

Add the jar of icing to the cake and mix until they make somewhat of a cake and icing ball. Tip #2 There is just no other way to do this than to get messy and use your hands.

Roll the cake mixture into cake balls. I use a tablespoon measure to make sure they are even.

I place the cake balls on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. One cake will yeild about 35 cake balls.

Tip #3 This tip is for the perfectionists. You'll notice these cake balls are a bit lumpy. I place these in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes and then roll them again. I would show you a picture of my cake balls in the fridge, but my fridge is neither cribs nor blog ready.

Arn't they looking much better? Melt a small amount of candy melts and dip the end of your sticks into the candly melt, then place your stick halfway through your cake ball. Tip #4 If you insert your candy stick too far into your cake ball, it will fall through the candy stick once you coat it in candy melt. If you don't insert it far enough the cake ball will fall off of your candy stick when you go to coat it in candy melt. However, don't lose sleep over this step. The toughest part is yet to come.

Tip #5 Stick these back in the fridge. This will keep your cake balls from melting off of the stick when you dip them in hot candy melt. I have also heard you can freeze them, but I havn't tried it.

Melt your candy melts. Tip #6 I find it's easiest to use a double boiler, as you may need to reheat the candy melt several times to get the right consistency. Tip #7 THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP. Use vegetable oil to get the right consistency in the candy melt. Too little and the candy melt will clump up on the cake ball and won't evenly coat it. Too much and of course the candy melt will be too thin to cover your cake ball. Again, don't lose sleep over this as the hardest part is yet to come. Is the anticipation killing you?

This next part can and will bring you to your knees. Take cake pops out of the fridge as you go. Turn them to the side and rotate them in the top of the candy melt in one quick twisting motion. I like to create an assembly line, as seen below, so that I can move the cake pops quickly from candy melt, to sprinkles should I choose to use them, to styrofoam to dry. The wine really does help for this step.

Tip #6 If you rotate your cake ball in the candy melt more than once you are likely to lose it in the candy melt. Or if you dunk the cake pop too deep into the candy melt you will likely lose it as well. I lose two to three cake balls to both of these mistakes every time I make these. For these cake pops I realized too late that I hadn't allowed them to get cold enough in the fridge, and had three fall off of the stick.

However, 32 of my 35 made it!

I will likely lose two to three more of these to The Rooster, who will eye them and ask about them until I cave and appease him with his own stash.

For those without sprinkles, I added a little fun touch. This is your chance to have fun, if you weren't having fun before.

Wrap them up & enjoy! I'm no Bakerella (her cake pop creations are hard to beat), but I think they will still make a special birthday treat.

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