Monday, May 16, 2011

Better Luck Next Time

The next time you go in to Starbucks do yourself a favor and order a Birthday Cake Pop. I have never been a cake fan, not even as a child, but this little Birthday Cake nugget is simply magical. Naturally I was thrilled when one of my friends from school, Julia, brought her version of these cake balls to my birthday party a few weeks ago. Everyone at the party marveled at her creation & they were to die for. Having seen & tasted Julia's semi-pro recreation of Starbucks magical cake, Coop volunteered to make a batch for the 1st birthday party of the little lady she takes care of here in Chicago. Julia shared the recipe she'd used with me...It seemed simple enough...

HERE'S the thing...We might have used a little too much icing (which prevented our cake pops from staying together & made it almost impossible to get the little lolly pop sticks to stay in.) We might ALSO have wanted to leave the cake pops in the freezer for a little longer, despite the fact that we left them in for 3 times longer than the recipe called for (hmmm....) But if you're in the mood to make this tasty treat, here's a few pieces of advice you'll definitely want to remember...
  1. Buy 3 times as much melting chocolate as it calls for (sometimes it just doesn't matter what you do)
  2. Leave the frozen cake balls in the freezer & take them out one at a time to cover them in chocolate.
  3. DO NOT dunk them directly into the melting chocolate (Yes, the instructions said not to do this...oops) Try holding them with a fork directly above the melting chocolate & using a spoon, drizzle the chocolate over the cake balls & then put them on a separate cookie sheet to dry. If you dip them in the dipping chocolate the cake gums up the works...quite literally. 
  4. DO NOT leave the melting chocolate to cool in countless mixing bowls all over your kitchen...the melting chocolate will harden (duh) & be nearly impossible to get out unless you soak it in scalding hot water & then hand wash them. Which is messy. And you'll probably need Draino.
The moral of this story is three fold - first, always be prepared to modify recipes so that your desired outcome is, in fact, what you desired (and not a mess of mushy cake bites littered on a white turkey platter) Second, never take on 100 cake balls or any other tiny treat by yourself (always have a partner in crime). And finally, Meghan Cooper is one of the most thoughtful people I know...only somebody as nice as her would volunteer to take on a project like this, even with my help. You're a nicey Coop. We'll get those Cake Balls next time.

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