January 9, 2011

Wilton Pops in a Post Contest - Early Valentine's Day!

One of my favorite ways to spend a rainy, cold weekend is baking although my husband doesn't appreciate the extra 10 pounds he always puts on in the winter.  Hey, we live in Oregon and need the extra padding for the cold, wet winters!  I'm even hoping to take Wilton's cake decorating classes with some of my friends soon so that I can learn all the tips and tricks to decorating cakes.  I would love to be able to create beautiful birthday creations when I have children someday.  It's something I've wanted to do for some time now and have found a few friends who also want to learn how to decorate so we are going to be putting a class together and broadening our horizons!  After hearing about the Wilton "Pops in a Post" contest, I instantly pre-registered hoping it would give me the push I needed to try my hand at cake pops and it did!  If you haven't already heard about them (if this is you, you must be living under a rock) cake pops are the newest craze as the cutest little desserts that taste delicious!  The trick for me was coming up with some original designs.  I'm not very confident in my creative abilities but I think I did ok.

Cake pops are pretty easy to make once you get the cake made and everything mixed together.  It's basically a box cake with instant pudding added and then baked in a 9x13 pan.  Once the cake has been baked and cooled, you crumble it up and mix in some ready-made frosting.  It's easy as that!  Forming the balls is just like making meatballs, which is in my blood as I am 1/4 Italian.  Once the balls are formed, they have to be chilled (this is a must, people).  This was one of the mistakes I made with my first batch because if the cake balls aren't cold, the melted chocolate will slide right off.  I put them in the freezer for about 30 minutes before rolling them in the melted chocolate.
Once I realized that I needed to chill the balls prior to rolling them in chocolate, the process went much smoother.  First, you take one of the Wilton sticks and dip it in some of the melted chocolate.  By the way, Wilton makes an amazing electric chocolate melter that saves you the effort of putting together a double boiler and heats the chocolate up to the perfect temperature.  Cool, huh?  I'm thinking I may use mine for fondue as well. But, I digress.  Back to the sticks.
Dip one end of the stick in the melted chocolate and push it into the cake pop until it's about half way through the pop.  Once you've got the stick pushed into the cake pop, the chocolate will harden and the pop will stay on the stick until someone rips it off with their teeth. Believe me, they will rip them off, too.  There are that good.  From here, you just cover them in yummy, melted chocolate!  Wilton makes a few different colors of melting chocolate to choose from depending on the occasion and what design you are creating.  I chose the red melting chocolate because I decided to make Valentine's Day inspired cake pops for this contest.
Because the pops are chilled, the chocolate will set almost immediately.  Make sure you tap the stick on the side to smooth out the chocolate layer.  Wilton also has these great stands for cake pops to set up.  You set the sticks in the holes and they stand up on there own while the chocolate hardens.  Decorating is a breeze with this stand since the balls are round and it's hard to lay them flat.
As you can see I have a Valentine's Day theme going on.  I even added a little food coloring to the frosting that I mixed into the cake so that it would have a slightly pink tint to the cake.  I think they turned out pretty cute, don't you? Not only are they cute, but my husband placed his seal of approval on the flavor. He thinks they're pretty delicious!
I received a box full of goodies from Wilton to help me get started including that amazing chocolate melter! Most of the decorations that I used for my Valentine's creations including the candy melts were purchased by me at a few local stores.  Here's what I found:
Thanks for reading about my fun experience with cake pops!  I had a blast trying to come up with some original and creative ideas and then using the decorations I found locally to create my own confections!

Disclosure:  I was sent free products from Wilton in exchange for a post about my own creative cake pops.  10 finalists will be chosen and those finalists have a chance to win the grand prize of a $500 Visa gift card while the other 9 finalists will win a $100 Visa gift card.
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3 comments:

  1. I'm loving them! They look like Valentine's that we used to make in art class with the doilies and construction paper.

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  2. They look so good! I would like to try this. Pamela Hopper. hopper6539@gmail.com

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  3. These came out awesome. I love V-Day and these cake pops look melt in your mouth yum!

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