A Pops Party! Cake Pops coming right up!

We had a party over the weekend, actually a wedding shower party; a friend’s daughter is getting married and a few of us teamed together to throw a shower. It was great fun………but then again, everything is more fun when you do it with friends!
 

I was in charge of the food, which as you know if you read this blog, was right up my alley! I had a blast coming up with the menu, recipes from which I will be blogging about over the next week.

My favorite part of the party preparation was planning the dessert course. After mulling around several ideas, I decided that it would be a “pops” theme, with all the desserts being served on a stick. A stick?????…….you might be asking, yes, a stick!…………. The guests had fun sampling Cake Pops, Pie Pops and Cookie Pops. All of them can be prepared in advance, frozen and unthawed which reduces last minute stress.

 Cake pops is the recipe I’m sharing today which has been quite a rage for the past few years. They were actually invented by an amazingly creative blogger, Angie, from Bakerella, a lovely blog that is always a wonderful inspiration for me.

When you hear how they’re made you might think………..”strange”, maybe even, “very strange” – and you’re right, it is an unusual, unique technique but the results are spectacular! Cake and frosting married together in a ball on a lollipop stick and covered with white or dark chocolate. I love that each one is just a few bites –  so you can sample a couple without feeling like you’ve over indulged.

As you can see from the pictures, Cake Pops make a lovely presentation and the sky’s the limit when it comes to decorating them. I did some with toffee bits and some I just dabbed with a bit of extra coating to make them look like roses unfolding. If you look online you’ll find a plethora of decorating ideas for these yummy treats. If you have a party coming up, want a special treat for your children’s teachers or just want to surprise family and/or friends give these fun Cake Pops a whirl – oh, and expect lots of oohs and aahs!

P. S. There are some wonderful tutorials online on making Cake Pops; this one by Angie, the Cake Pops queen, was very helpful to me along with this one – have fun!

Vanilla Cake Pops

Ingredients

1 box of white cake mix plus whatever ingredients you need to make the cake, (I’m not crazy about cake mix so I used this super easy recipe for my pops)
1 container of white frosting (rather than using the canned frosing, I used this Butter Cream recipe)
2 packages of candy melts (Michaels carry a variety of different colors, or you can buy the white ones and dye them to your liking. Only use gel food coloring to dye candy melts, as the liquid stuff won’t work I used white dipping chocolate instead of these – it was a lot cheaper!
1 bag of lollipop sticks (also from Michaels or Walmart)
2 tablespoons of shortening
sprinkles (optional), I tried some with sprinkles but didn’t like the hard “crunch” that they added to each bite
large foam ring (found in the “wreath making” section at Michaels or Walmart)
Directions
1. Bake the cake as directed in the box mix recipe or your own recipe and let it cool completely.

2.  Crumble the cake into fine crumbs and mix in the frosting. You really don’t need to over-think this part. Add half the can of frosting and start mixing. Keep adding more frosting to the mixture until it gets sticky enough to roll into a ball. (I used about a cup of the homemade frosting) You can use a spatula to mix the cake and frosting together, but you can also use your hands.

3. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper. Next, take small portions of your cake/frosting mixture and use your hands to roll them into small balls and place them on the lined cookie sheet. The balls should be the size of a large gum ball. If you make them too big, they will fall off the stick during the candy coating process. Also, their circumference grows when you coat them with the candy, so start out making them smaller than you want your end product to be. ( I used a small scooper to get even size balls.)

4. Prepare your candy melts or dipping chocolate using the directions on the back of the package.  Follow the directions carefully. If you burn the candy melts they will taste really, really bad. I melted mine on power level 5 to prevent burning. Dip one end of the lollipop stick into the candy melt and then insert the same end directly into the cake ball. After all the cake balls have lollipop sticks in them, put the cookie sheet in the fridge or freezer to set.
5. If your chocolate is too thick at this point you might need to re-heat it  If the mixture still seems too thick, (it should be smooth and fairly runny)you can add a tablespoon or two of shortening to thin it out. Just add the shortening and return to the microwave for 30 seconds. Carefully dunk the cake pop into the melted candy. Turn it around until it is completely covered. Then, take the cake pop out and gently turn it over and over until all the excess candy melt has dripped off. I like to gently tap it at this point to help remove the extra coating. You only need a very thin layer of the candy melt.

Notes:
Michaels also sells small plastic baggies that you can tie over the tops of each cake pop to be used as party favors, or you can cover your foam ring in colored plastic wrap and use it to present your cake pops. I arranged my cake pops in pretty glass containers stuffed with paper confetti.

– I would suggest watching one of the Cake Pop tutorials listed if you want to try out Cake Pops. They are extremely helpful!
– As you can see in the pictures, I also made chocolate Cake Pops – I used a simple chocolate cake recipe and used dipping chocolate for the coating. I decorated them with drizzles of white chocolate and toffee bits.

Recipe from Rated by Mom (with my adaptations included)


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