Monday, July 1, 2013

Cake Pops

Cake pops. AKA Cake Truffles. AKA AMAZING! If you haven't had them, you are in for a completely delectable treat! Ok. Something you need to know about me: I am a mild chocoholic. Soooo you could make these cake pops with just about any kind of cake/frosting combination, but with me--it's gotta be chocolate. Now you can use boxed cake, I suppose, but PLEASE make your frosting. It is soooo fresh and tasty, really easy to do, and doesn't have a crazy amount of chemicals to preserve it. With my chocolate cake truffles, I like to use cream cheese frosting. It adds just the right balance of sweetness and richness.
Beat together the following:
3 Tablespoons cream cheese (softened)
3 Tablespoons butter (softened)
1 1/2 c powdered sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons milk

You will also need two layers of your favorite chocolate cake.

This may sound like overkill, but I actually weighed my cake. It came to 2 pounds and 5 ounces. Since the ratio of frosting to cake is fairly important, I figure that my slightly obsessive behavior will help you sub different recipes of cake with the same results. If your two layers weigh less than that, then DON'T put all of the frosting into the mix.

Step one. Crumble your cake. Tear off a chunk (I usually do a quarter of a layer at a time) and just rub it between your hands. Make sure all of the crumbs are about equal in texture. Big pieces will make your balls crumble....

Plop your frosting on top. (If your cakes were smaller, then try adding half to three quarters, stir it together and then add a bit more as needed.)

Now, you could use a spoon to get started, but honestly the best tool for mixing in the frosting are your 5-10 digits. If you are worried about your mani, this recipe probably isn't for you, but give it a try anyways. You'll thank me later. Your hands are washable :-)
Make sure you get the frosting worked evenly throughout the cake to bind it together.

Texture check: When you pick up a palm-full of your mixture and give it a little squeeze, it should just stick together. If it is too dry, add more frosting (or if you used up all of your frosting, a teaspoon of milk). If it feels squishy, you put in a little too much frosting. There are two ways I can think of to fix this problem.

FIX #1: MAKE MORE CAKE! You can always freeze what you don't use now for later! Or just help yourself to a nice, warm piece drizzled with melted chocolate and a cup of milk (or tea, as you prefer)...

FIX #2: crush some oreo cookies (without filling). Sprinkle in the crumbs to help absorb some of the frosting...

Crisis averted. Now on with the instructions. Scoop a golf ball sized amount into your hand. Do you have a cookie scoop? Use it. They will all be the same size! Gently press the crumbs into a ball and roll it in your palm. You will get messy. It helps to wash your hands every now and again to keep the sticking to a minimal.

Place the finished balls on a sheet of waxed paper on a tray. Chill. The balls, I mean. Well, you could chill while they chill. Remember that big piece of cake I mentioned before? Yum...

Usually 10-15 minutes in the freezer will do the trick. If using the fridge, it will take longer...

Now it is time to decide how to present your truffles or pops. We went with the pop. Everything is better on a stick, right? To make a pop, dip one end of the lolly stick into your melted chocolate.
OH MY GOODNESS. I forgot the melted chocolate. You will also need to melt some candy coating. My choice? Ghirardelli double chocolate candy melting bars. They come in HUGE bars that you just break off a big chunk and melt. Soooooo good. We get ours from Sam's Club. If you don't want to go top of the line, you can find Wilton candy melts in most craft stores or even Walmart. They come in a variety of flavors and colors.

Okay. Back on track here. Dip one end of the lolly stick in the chocolate, about a half an inch deep. Gently push into your chilled truffle balls as you can see above. Let the coating harden. It will hold the truffle on the stick.

Dip the ball into the chocolate like so. After making sure you have it covered thoroughly, tap the stick on the side of the bowl. It will help the excess coating drip off. Don't hit too hard or the candy coating won't be the only thing that falls in the bowl...

You can leave it just as is, OR you can now roll the coated ball in some sort of topping. We have used toffee, oreo, coconut, sprinkles... It makes them so pretty!

I like to just stick the finished pieces back on the wax paper to dry. They look a little like caramel apples to me. But you could poke holes in styrofoam and dry them right side up.

Upside down is easier...

Voila! C'est magnifique, oui?

So now that I have you drooling a little, go give it a try! I will be happy to answer questions if you have them!
This post was brought to you by Amanda Doster

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