Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Cake Pops (Sprinkles!!!)
So if you've talked to me at all in the past month you've learned of my newest delight...CAKE POPS!!!
They are a great "rainy day" activity or if you are a teacher like me...a SNOW DAY activity. We've had a handful of snow days this winter so I've stayed inside and made cake pops. If you've never heard of cake pops, just google them and you'll see all sorts of cool stuff. I had heard about them through Bakerella whose blog I occasionally read. Now, there are some websites and other resources out there about what cake pops are or how to make them, but Bakerella has some REALLY cute stuff. She recently released a book on cake pops and that's where I learned how to make them. I actually checked out the book from the library to save some money. You might want to scope out the book to learn the techniques and get some creative ideas. They have cake pops for EVERY occassion. I've made some cute ones, but they can be A LOT of work. Like 4 or 5 hours worth of work. So don't try these unless you can dedicate an entire afternoon or have a lot of help.
These are going to be EVERYWHERE in the next year or so. I know you are going to see them a lot at weddings, showers, parties, birthdays, etc. So keep your eyes out -- you heard it here first! The best part about cake pops is yes, they are so stinkin' cute but they taste REALLY REALLY good. They usually last for several days. So make them a few days in advance if you are trying to save time.
If it's your first attempt at cake pops I would suggest keeping it simple and just trying for basic cake pops, cake balls, or basic cake pops with sprinkles. They are super delicious and as the leading expert on sprinkle useage I can honestly say that sprinkles are an awesome, colorful touch. Go for it!
You should read up more on cake pops before trying to make them, but I can give you a basic idea on how to make them below...
Bake a cake according to box directions. You could bake it from scratch of course, but this is already a process, so just keep it simple. Pillsbury, Duncan Hines, etc. will do the trick. I've used regular chocolate cake, funfetti, spice cake, and vanilla (buttercream recipe) they are all equally awesome. It's fun to experiment with different kind and flavors, but for now just stick with something you love. So I would recommend trying out chocolate cake first.
After baking the cake, let it cool, then break the cake up and crumble it into a medium size bowl. Mix in a half can of chocolate icing (or other kind) with a spoon so that the whole batch is moist. Using your hands roll the cake into 1 inch sized balls. Place on cookie sheet or pastry board and place in the freezer for about 15 minutes so they harden. One cake makes about 48 cake balls.
Once the balls have cooled, dip a lollipop stick into melted chocolate (use those wafers from AC MOORE/Michael's) then insert halfway into the cake ball and let it dry. Then dunk the cake pop completely into the chocolate. The trick is to use a narrow deep glass/bowl/dish. Small glass measuring cups are really useful. You are going to dip the stick with the cake ball straight into the chocolate and completely submerge it. Don't twirl or move around that will cause the cake to come off. It may take a couple tries.
You will have to tap off some of the extra chocolate. Do this careful and wait a little, especially if the chocolate is really really hot. But before the chocolate dries cover in sprinkles or spoon sprinkles over top. Place in a styrofoam stand to dry.
It's a pretty complex process, especially if you do any of the cute ones, so I highly suggest reading up on it. But they are totally worth it and always a hit. ENJOY!
What do you think? Comments? Suggestions? I would love to know that you visited my blog. Please leave me a message letting me know you were here! Did you try out a recipe? Let me know! I would love to hear from you :-)