Cake pops, for those of you who have lives that don’t center around cake, children, and/or overpriced coffee shops,* are cake balls on sticks. They aren’t bad and they come in different flavors, usually with marshmallows, sprinkles, M&Ms, or even crystallized ginger.** Some are pretty fancy, too.
My kids think they’re the Best Thing Ever. So for Valentine’s Day, we gave them a cake pop kit.
Janie was so excited, she held onto it and jumped all over the kitchen shrieking, until the pan fell out of the box and hit her big toe.***
A promise is a promise. So yesterday, we went out, bought a box of cake mix and a box of pudding mix—as per the recipe suggestions—brought out the Big Bag o’ Wholesale Chocolate Chips for the coating, and got to work.
Sunny mixed the dry stuff, Janie mixed the wet stuff, and I operated the oven and the double-boiler.
We think it worked pretty well for the first time:
I learned several things with our first batch, like we need a bit more liquid than the recipe says,^ I should change into my old painting clothes before working with melted stuff, one box of mix makes a ton of these things,^^ and you’d better have a clear plan of how to keep the pops upright while the chocolate hardens. ^^^ It was also agreed that Janie has a knack for coating these things—she twirls them around a spoon instead of the pot, which is both common sense and sheer brilliance—while Sunny’s talents probably lie more in sprinkle application.
But the single most important thing to know about making Cake Pops° is that they’re like puppies—everyone wants to play with them, but when it comes to cleaning up, guess who gets stuck with the mess?
But the pan does work. And they taste wonderful.
So I’m thinking I might even make some for Sunny’s birthday party next month. With sprinkles.
*There must be some of you out there . . . What’s it like?
**Or so I’m told by FoodNetwork. I’m afraid I don’t frequent places where that kind of garnish is a possibility.
***At which point she hobbled all over the kitchen shrieking. Luckily, we’d also picked up a pack of rainbow bandages.
^ The instructions say to add an extra egg and the pudding mix and halve the water, and then show you a diagram of how to pour the batter in the bottom pan. Nope, not gonna happen—I had to go in there after it with my eighth-cup measure and use a finger to scrape it into each cup, then squeegee the excess across the surface of the pan. This stuff is sticky.
^^Which is why we have a bag of stick-less, chocolate-coated balls in the fridge and the first person to mention South Park in the comments is banned for a week. I’ve heard all of the jokes since yesterday afternoon. All of them.
^^^ Like say, something more substantial than the purloined Styrofoam base of a former Lakota tipi craft project—and you’d better stick ‘em starting inside-out rather than outside-in. And again, I’ve heard all the jokes, thanks.
°Or anything you cook with kids.