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June 18, 2011

Cake Pops

A bridal luncheon I attended recently had the sweetest cake pops as dessert and favors. The bride's aunts had made them themselves after reading an article in the local paper, the Kansas City Star. I was having too much fun with the bride at the event to think of taking a photo, so the ones above are from Starbucks.

I know some bloggers who only print original recipes. One reason I do occasionally reprint, with proper credit, an article I've read or idea I've seen elsewhere is to create my own index of things I want to try. Another, as in this case, is that some webpages can only be found for a limited time. I went to dig this up only to find it had expired on the newspaper's site, and I had to do a fair amount of searching to come across it again.

At Starbucks the cake pop version "Rocky Road" is a chocolate frosting decorated with mini marshmallows and nuts. Since I love the ice cream, that one always jumps out at me visually.

The pops in the recipe re-printed from the newspaper article are decorated with candy corn to look like flowers. I just liked the technical explanation of how to make the pops come together. I think my "cake pop stand" will consist of a cereal box, with holes poked using an ice pick. And I see the recipe states not to freeze--wonder why not, or if you can at least do so once the pops are made....Some kitchen experiments to come soon....

Cake Pop Flowers

Makes 48 cake pops

1 boxed cake mix, baked as directed

¾ can vanilla frosting

3 (1-pound) packages white chocolate candy coating

1 package of 50 cake pop sticks

Multicolored candy corn

1 cake pop stand (available at most craft stores)

1 pastry bag

1 small bag pastel-colored M&Ms

In a large bowl, break up the cake into fine crumbs, eliminating all chunks. Add the frosting, then cream it together with the cake crumbs until the mixture reaches a Play-Doh-like consistency. With your hands (wearing thin, latex gloves) mold the batter into small, cone-shaped balls, then place them on a cookie sheet lined with waxed paper. Cover it with plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours in a refrigerator. Do not freeze.

Melt the candy coating, one package at a time, according to package directions. (Tip: if the candy coating is too thick, add 3 tablespoons of solid shortening per package and reheat in the microwave to achieve a thinner consistency).

Taking a few cake balls out of the refrigerator at a time, dip the end of an empty cake-pop stick into the melted candy coating, then pierce the center of the narrowest end of the cone-shaped cake ball, pushing no more than half way through. Holding the stick with the pop facing down, dip the entire pop into the melted candy coating. Remove the pop slowly and lift upward, allowing excess candy coating to drip down toward the stick. Rotate (or spin) the pop as the coating drips down to achieve an even coating and cover all "bald" spots. Set coated pops in the cake pop stand. Add melted candy coating to the pastry bag.

Using coating like glue, squeeze a thin layer on top of the cake pops. Carefully arrange candy corns in desired colors to make the petals of the flowers. Squeeze more candy coating on the middle of the flower petals, and top with an M&M of your choice.

Recipe from Celia Thompson, instructor of the cake pop class at the Culinary Center of Kansas City.

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