Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Balls....................

I know what your thinking.....Ornaments (at least I hope that is what you were thinking!). 

Ornaments are everywhere I mean EVERYWHERE since oh I don't know November 1st. I guess not everyone got the memo that as soon as you take off your Halloween gear, to pull out all the decorations~! Well here I'm not talking about ornaments. I'm talking about delicious, gooey, moist CAKE balls.

Heaven.On.A.Stick

Just ask my little bakers & the main judge Mr. B. Can we blame them?  I mean seriously this has potential to be one of those sinful desserts. As the saying goes..."if I don't see you before Christmas, make your own cake balls". Well it goes something like that anyways. Mr. B has some similar saying he likes to tell people around this time of year LOL. In fact I stole this exact saying from him a few minutes ago after he read the title over my shoulder (thanks honey).

But it brings truth here. If you don't like the ones you have tried, just have another. The possibilities are endless. You can make just about any flavor you want, then dip them in any candy or chocolate you want, and then cover them in anything you want! WHEW I feel like I went to see Willy Wonka with my golden ticket!

I don't know about you but I just gained at least 3 pounds just thinking about it. 


Well, thanks to Bakerella and all the other great cake ball makers floating around blogland I've been inspired to roll out some balls with my baking assistants Daisy Mae & Winston.

I know this is a surprise but Christmas is 11 days away... go ahead freak out just for a second!
Right. Now that we all have calmed down let me ask...............
Everyone is ready right? I mean I know I am (wink)!  As if marking off your lists that you've had made since October (or earlier) isn't stressful enough to make you go crazy. There is always that surprise gift! You know the one I am talking about.... the gift of an obligatory gift return! 

During this time of year there is normally someone who gives you a gift unexpectedly and  now you feel obligated to return the gesture, especially if you work in an office.  For that surprise gift giver you give a look of surprise stating something like,  " you shouldn't have"(literally), or "I left yours at home", or a favorite "it hasn't been delivered yet". You get the point here. The point is not only did they give you something you probably didn't need or want, like that hot chocolate or tea mug set from Wal-mart or tape holder shaped like a shoe, but also the obligation to return the gesture. 

 As soon as you open the gift your mind starts thinking of regifting options.. who can you give this to who is still on your list..oops secrets out folks! 

 Pssh if you ask me they are just gift seekers!

This hasn't happened to me this year (yet). For me it's a little different. I started a new job, and with that new job comes new bosses. They are great people and I love my job. This past weekend they treated us all to a very nice evening out ( I work for a very small business).

So I need to do something in return right? Well I for one think Christmas has become way to commercialized, especially for adults. So this year rather than giving my new work family commercialized gifts, Daisy Mae and I decided to summon our inner Bakerella, and make Christmas Balls!
 
She's ready!

 Since one of the partners at work has 3 small children I decided to make little cake pops for them, (see pic below) in some sort of display to take home as gifts.  I figured the little ones won't examine them as closely since this is my 1st try with these!

 
I made these pails for my bosses little kiddos for Christmas.. I may get fired after their SUGAR HIGH.



I was hoping to have a few more pics, but Mr. B was the photographer and every time I looked up he was eating my models, or forgetting to actually take the pictures!

Anywho... enjoy from my table to yours (and theirs) .

Happy Holidays,
TB

So here we go.. my attempt at CHRISTMAS BALLS! 
Ingredients:
  • 1 box Duncan Hines Cake Mix, I used Strawberry (next time I will experiment with homemade cake mix)
  • 3/4 container frosting, I used Strawberry frosting (will make from scratch next time too)
  • Almond Bark or White Chocolate, or Candy Melts
  • Sprinkles
  • Lollipop Sticks
  • Decor items such as coverings, bows, etc. (I tied little Christmas bows on the sticks)
  • Parchment Paper
Directions:

Follow directions on cake mix box for baking the cake, once baked let cook completely.
TB's Tip: I cover the pan with parchment paper, then pour batter into pan. It bakes evenly, and easy cleanup!





Yup handmixer... Santa where's my Kitchen-Aid?

I whisk the ingredients together before using the hand mixer.



Once cooled down, crumble the entire sheet cake into a bowl and mix in the 3/4 container of frosting.
TB's Tip: It gets messy, and I use my hands to make sure it all gets mixed evenly.


                                


Next, cover a cookie sheet with parchment (wax) paper, and roll out the cake balls into even portions.  My batch made about 25. Once rolled out stick in the fridge to harden so the lollipop sticks won't fall.
 

TB's Tip: I used a table spoon to measure the amount of cake to roll. To cool faster you can stick in the freezer.

Once cooled and hardened put the lollipop sticks into the cake balls. If they won't stay put you can dip the stick in the melted candy or chocolate, place back inside the cake ball and put back in freezer. Once the candy hardens the stick will stand up and stay stronger.

After all the cake balls have been turned into cake pops it's time to cover them in ooey gooey yummy chocolate or candy melts. Above I used Almond Bark which was very sweet, next time around I will try something else.


See cake pops on sheet, this is also me adding sprinkles after dipping.
To melt your candy, follow directions on package. You can either melt in Microwave (stirring every 30 seconds or the chocolate/candy will burn or seize). You can also use a double boiler (make sure no water or steam gets in chocoloate/candy or it will seize).

Make sure the melted candy is in a glass or bowl deep enough for you to completely emerge the cake pop to coat it. Continue to spin around to coat completely, tap on the side of the glass to help make a smooth even coat and remove excess.
TB's Tip: Don't spin or tap to hard, the cake pop could fall off.  If the stick is flimsy you can rotate the actual bowl or glass to help coat. 




Place the coated cake pop on the wax paper covered cookie sheet. If you want to decorate with sprinkles  make sure to do so before the candy coating starts to set.





                                Finished!