Cake pops are not common in this part of the world. I may be wrong, but from what I have come to understand from my limited surfing experience in the blogosphere, it was Angie of Bakerella who had almost single handedly created the trend around these portable, pretty little treats. Bakerella's creation are adorable and delightful - they evoke sweet childhood lollipop memories and have the power to make the most apathetic adult squeal 'So CUUUTE!!'. These clever little sweets have become so popular that even Starbucks in the US are selling them now. Perhaps, soon, very soon... we will get to see them here at our local Starbucks stores too..
When I learnt that Jeroxie's theme for the International Incident Party Event this month is Cake Pops, I thought it would be a perfect excuse to try my hand at making them. (Only, I have just found out that I have missed the dateline.. I never seem to be good at this. Last month, I failed to read the instructions carefully and published my article too early. This month, assuming the dateline is the same, I have only now discovered that the event was closed yesterday.... sigh)
Most of the recipes published in food blogs seem to use Cake premixes and canned frosting. I prefer to attempt this from scratch. The recipe I have chosen is the very easy Martha Stewart One Bowl Chocolate cupcake. Reason being, it is simple, moist and fine crumbed. Cream cheese frosting is not difficult to make as demonstrated in my Peter Rabbit Carrot Cupcake. I took the easy approach towards dressing up the pops. Not one to fiddle with cartoon characters or other cutesy shapes, I chose a very safe and adult approach - coating them with Valhorna Bittersweet chocolate - which was easier than I had expected.
The biggest challenge, to my chagrin, was photographing these cake pops. I was trying to figure out some way to get them to stand up stylishly for the photos and had been exhausting all the bric bracs in my cabinet... I have never had such a messy photo shooting session ever and had to spend a good hour cleaning up afterwards.
So here, I am, late for the party but as Xiaolu of 6 Bittersweets had quite sweetly put it - I can just be fashionably late for the party... I only hope these are fashionable enough!
Please hop on over to Jeroxie's website to check out the other cake pop ideas at the party!
Recipe : (From Martha Stewart's Cupcake Cookbook)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup butter milk
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cups warm water
Cream Cheese Frosting (refer to here)
Embellishment : melted semi sweet chocolate, chopped roastd peanuts, cocoa powder, tinted melted white chocolate
1. Preheat oven to 170C.
2. Line a cake pan with parchment paper.
3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cocao, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Reduce speed to low. Add eggs, milk, oil, extract and water.
4. Mix well until smooth. Pour into cake pan and bake for 20-30mins or until an inserted testing skewer comes out clean.
5. Cool down the cake completely.
Assembly & Embellishment :
1. Crumble the cake into a mixing bowl. Add cream cheese frosting to the cake crumbs and mix well. ( I use 80g of frosting to bind 300g of cake crumbs)
2. Bind the cake crumbs into little balls. Each of my ball weighs about 30g.
3. Place the balls in the freezer for about 15 mins. (important! This will make it easy when you coat the balls with chocolate)
4. First dip the tip of a lollipop stick into the melted chocolate.(see tutorial here)
5. Push the lollipop stick into the cake balls. Dip the cake pop into the melted chocolate to coat the cake ball. Tap off excess coating.
6. Let it dry a little before coating it with peanuts or cocoa powder. Stand the pops in a styrofoam slab and leave it in the fridge.