Who ever said making caking pops was easy? (Ahem… bakerella). It most certainly is not. It is a ton of work and takes a lot of practice and finesse. There, I said it. I’m so tired of these DIYers out there making it look like everything they do is just the easiest thing they’ve ever done.
Its time someone spoke out, and I’m willing to be the someone.
This is the true story of how I tried and failed, and tried again, until finally I made the (almost) perfect Cake Pop! This post is dedicated to all of you who, like me, had a dream of being a baking goddess… only to be faced with the ugly truth, “I am NOT Martha Stewart.”
I picked up a Bakerella book at William’s Sonoma the other day and read through the whole thing right there in the store. Don’t judge me, but I snapped a couple pictures of the recipes. Armed with the ease of the illustrations and the gorgeous ideas, I was ready to go! I popped into Michael’s with my 40% off coupons in hand, and stocked up on lollipop sticks, Wilton candy coating, candy food colors, and styrofoam blocks. I picked up some box cakes and vanilla frosting as well.
First of all, the Bakerella recipe is WRONG. I’m not trying to disparage her because I think she’s an innovator, but whoever the test chef was who wrote this recipe obviously did not test it out first. There’s just no way.
The recipe calls for one boxed cake to one 16 oz cannister of frosting. This made for extremely mushy dough. A whole canister of frosting is WAY too much. Even after freezing the balls they were much too soft to hold up on the stick. It was even worse once I tried to coat them with the candy.
Several fell off the sticks into the candy and crumbs got all in my velvety candy coating.
The ones that made it through the coating process fell off while cooling on the sticks.
<– These are the ones that bit the dust. 😦
Ugh, the whole thing was very frustrating. But alas I am a champ.
Here’s how I did it…
I started with a chocolate cake this time, the kind with the pudding mixed in.
After it cooled completely I cut the crust off the edge, so I didn’t have any crunchy pieces in my dough. Adam gobbled the crusts up in seconds!
I crumbled up the cake into evenly broken up crumbs. If you roll the cake between your palms it will really help for a nice smooth crumb. It was lots of fun getting my hands in there! This would be a great part to let the kids help with.
This time I only added about 1/3 of the frosting. About 5/8 of a cup if you’re making your own frosting.
The result was a nice firm dough. —>
Using a 1 oz scoop made perfectly portioned balls.
Though the portion was perfect, the shape wasn’t- so I rolled them between my palms to make nice smooth round balls. Then I popped them into the freezer to firm up.
Now comes the fun part! I made a handy little double boiler to melt the Wilton candy using two pyrex measuring cups. I just kept my electric kettle near by with freshly boiled water to change it out so the candy stayed smooth. I also added a few teaspoons of shortening to thin out the candy a bit so it wasn’t too thick of a coating on the cake balls. It only takes a few minutes to melt and it gets really smooth.
Start by dipping the sticks into the candy and then gently push them only half way into the balls.
Then stick them into a styrofoam block and chill in the fridge for a few minutes.
On my first attempt I tried dipping them into the candy but this made the balls fall off the sticks. So I like holding them over the dish and spooning the melted candy over them.
Then gently twist & tap the cake pops on on the edge of the dish until no more “blops” of candy drip off.
Now all that I had to do was set them in the block, and let them cool. Then they were ready for embellishments!
I melted some white candy and poured it into a squeeze bottle.
I kept a glass with boiling water nearby in case the bottle started to cool. Then I just drizzled it over the pops.
And here is the final product!
They were a hit at my mom’s dinner party!
And finally… always be sure to buckle up for safety when transporting your little pops.