Well, I’m off again. This time to Atlanta for Design ADAC.
Design ADAC is a series of designer events hosted at ADAC every May. It is a great chance for me to freshen my library, explore new sources and sit in some really neat symposiums. Martyn Lawrence Bullard, Mary McDonald, Miles Redd, Eric Cohler, Charles Faudree and Laura Kirar are among the headliners. The format is usually casual and I have found the interior designers/architects that are speaking are usually candid and funny in these intimate settings. I enjoy myself tremendously while learning something new, eating great food and tooling around the beautiful blooming streets of Buckhead.
I will have to play catch up with sharing my Florida pictures (last week’s adventure) and my latest working projects when I return.
In the mean time… I have a dear friend who has exploded onto the cake pop scene and she has graciously agreed to guest post for me. Jen used to be my neighbor and when she moved away a couple of years ago I was uber sad. Jen is one of those funny girls who is smart, super pretty, a great mom and I don’t hate her for her many fabulous attributes. Instead, I totally dig her. And on top of it all, she balances her life with a lot of grace and humor. Please check out her blog and her Facebook page where she posts awesome pictures of her creations. Oh and by the way…she ships A LOT of orders so even if you don’t live in Dallas, you can experience them for yourself.
Below she shares tips, tricks of the trade and some yummy pictures! Thanks Jen!!
Get on the ball, y’all!
Hi. I’m Jen from Evanssays, be sweet. I know absolutely nada about interior design. I leave that to incredibly talented peeps like Amy. I bake. I create petite sweets. Although I make a wide variety of bite-sized treats, my cake pops tend to be the most requested and garner the most attention. Because cake pops are my most popular item and I have a few high volume clients, I have the advantage of making literally thousands of the very temperamental buggers. The learning curve is large but I’m about to break it down for you.
Basics of cake ball/pop making:
- Bake a cake.
- Let it cool.
- Put it in a food processor and run that puppy until its mealy.
- Add frosting. Run the food processor until it makes dough the consistency of Play Dough. Not mealy. It should pinch together.
- Ball up the dough into bite-sized pieces.
- CHILL. It is so important to let them chill for several hours.
Dip the tip of a lollipop stick in chocolate and insert it into your cake ball. Let set.
Dip in melted chocolate and let them set.
Sounds easy enough, right? Not so much. They can be tough little buggers. So here are some tips I’ve learned along the way.
Tips to making cake balls/pops:
- When adding frosting to your cake, make sure you add a little at a time. I usually average about 1/4 to 1/3 of a batch of frosting. Too much will make them too mushy and not very cooperative, too little with make for a cracked and crumbly ball. Neither is ideal.
- You must let them chill. Overnight if at all possible. Bare minimum a few hours. The longer they chill the more solidly they hold their shape, which is crucial in the dipping process.
- When dipping, make sure your cake balls aren’t too cold and the chocolate isn’t too hot. The result will be cracking and it will likely frustrate you to no end because they don’t crack right away. They crack when the ball comes to room temperature and expands. You know, about the time you’re done dipping the rest of your batch. Basically, let the chocolate cool for several minutes and the chilled cake balls sit at room temperature at the same time.
- Wilton’s candy melts are ok in a bind. They’re the easiest to find at craft stores like Michaels or Jo-Ann’s. They create a thick melted coating, which can be tricky when dipping. To thin it out you can add a teaspoon of vegetable oil. OR avoid it all and hunt down Merckens candy melts because they are the best (you’ll thank me for it).
- When dipping, make sure to very gently tap off the excess chocolate.
- Once dipped in the chocolate or candy coating there is no need to refrigerate them. They become sealed. If you pop them in the fridge and then pull them out they will likely sweat.
- Have fun! The reason you are making them is usually for a fun occasion. Don’t let these feisty buggers ruin your efforts for a good time. (I may or may not do things like sets of squats in my kitchen while various components set, cool or chill. If only my neighbors could see me in an apron with the music blaring counting out squats while holding tiny chocolate dipped Jimmies. Oh yeah. It’s happened. Repeatedly.)
Thanks a million Jen! I might even try my hand at these….(oh who am I kidding-I’ll just order some from Evanssays Be Sweet)!
Here are more incredibly creative delights from Jen:
And my personal favorite: The Turkey!!!! Count me in for next Thanksgiving! I think these are adorable!
Thanks for reading! And thanks again to Jen for sharing her knowledge and encouragement!!
Let me know how your cake pops come out.