Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Salted Caramel Cake Pops!

Some how, I survived last week with flying colors. I rocked my work trip, my project team was very productive even though I was out of the office AND my cake pops were delicious! I feel like that is a win for all.

I borrowed the recipe from Instructables.com

I made this recipe about 3 years ago, I believe Isabella (my niece and "mini-me", I call her Bells) was turning 6 and I told her that I'd bake her anything she wanted. Of course at the time, making cake pops that tasted like they were the ones from Starbucks sounded like a massive challenge. The first time I made this, I had a LOT of help from my husband... baking was not my forte.

Since I was traveling last week, I broke this recipe up into phases. I started the cake mix on Monday morning around 6am and put it to bake. I don't think I let it bake quite long enough (yes, I did read the temp and time instructions!) because when I let it cool on the stove, it ended up looking like this:

I'm no master chef but I'm pretty sure the cake isn't supposed to have this big HOLE in the middle! I proceeded to chop up the cooled cake in the food processor on Monday evening and that HOLE easily disappeared once all of the cake was mixed together in a bowl :) No stress! I followed the next steps of the recipe and mixed my crumbled cake and the caramel sauce together to form little cake balls. I let the cake balls harden in the fridge over night and on Tuesday morning I put them in a freezer bag and threw them in the freezer.

Wednesday through Friday I was working in Ohio on a large client project. Large, complex projects are what I DREAM about! During the 7 years spent in college, 5 of those years I had no clue what I wanted to do once I graduated. I was lucky enough to have managers and mentors through the years who involved me in some large initiatives and thats how I discovered project management. I still work for the same company, but now I get to manage small projects of my own. My trip to Ohio was with a team of coworkers or "experts" in their area from all over the country.

While I was gone, I also took my first pregnancy "bumpie" as I turned 19 weeks on Friday.

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On Friday night around 8pm I took my cake balls out of the freezer and I started to melt chocolate. I took the easy-way out by purchasing this microwavable dipping chocolate at Publix. The first time I made the recipe I melted the chocolate on a double-boiler (you can find out how to melt it like a "pro" using a double-boiler here). I did use a double-boiler for the white choloate. But dipping the entire cake ball for the milk chocolate was much easier to control the heat in the microwave as you literally have three steps involved: 1) microwave 2) stir 3) repeat as necessary

Once the chocolate was nice and warm, it was ready for dipping! First I dipped every stick into the chocolate before I put it in the cake ball. This was an exceptional tip from the recipe site I followed. ALL OF THE CAKE POPS STAYED ON THE STICKS WHILE BEING ENJOYED! This is pretty fantastic because the first time I made this recipe, it was a royal mess of cake pops falling off their sticks.

Once I dipped all of the pops, I put them on a silpat to harden.
 didn't realize until afterwards that this
would make my pops "flat" on one side.
I tried to cover up the flat side with the white chocolate and the caramel drizzle.
The wonderful thing about 8-year-olds is that they don't judge you on aesthetics && this is the smile that I used to measure my success :)

Until next time!
xo Chef Stephanita

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