At first it was the cake that made it’s legendary entrance into the world- sweet, light, airy, and delicious. Then, it was the cupcake- smaller, sweeter, lighter, airy-er?, and just as delicious. But now there’s a new revolution- revolutionizing the entire baking world as we know it. CAKE POPS! Little, bite-size (well, 2 or 3 bites) and filled with all the things that make cake great- just in a ‘to-go’ fashion.
Be prepared: I have been known to use the terms ‘cake-bites’, ‘cake-pops’ and ‘cake balls’ interchangeably. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Cake Bites are great! I made them over the weekend, and they’re easy to do.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Packaged, easy-to-find-, easy-to-make, no hassle, store-bought cake mix. (I prefer Duncan Hines)
- Packaged, easy-to-find-, easy-to-make, no hassle, store-bought frosting. (I prefer Betty Crocker)
- Olive oil
- Butter (2-3 tbspoons only- you’ll see why)
- Semi-sweet chocolate chips
- White chocolate chips
- Colorful, crunchy, and make-your-cake-look-like-candy Sprinkles
Start with the cake box: Make the cake! (according to the package instructions).
Now here’s to the olive oil: Want a ‘healthier’ twist on cake pops? [Healthy & Cake Bites may be the biggest oxymoron. Ha!] Instead of adding the entire amount of butter that the the cake box calls for, add about 1/3 of the butter, and fill in the rest with olive oil. It’s better for you anyway: Good old unsaturated olive oil that doesn’t clog up your arteries and provide another risk factor for atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. I’m an Anatomy professor, can’t ya tell?
Once you make the cake, it should look something like this: (and it should probably not include the fork marks that are in the center of my cake. I had to poke it to see if it was cooked all the way through. But if you just follow the instructions on the cake mix you may not have to go around poking the center of the cake. Just saying)
Loveeeellyyyy! Now let it coooll down! And before it cools down, you may want to take a slice of warm cake and add a dab of frosting and eat it just like that. Your choice, Mac.
If you’re impatient like me, and don’t want to wait so long for the cake to cool down, do this:
Cutting the cake up into smaller fragments creates a greater surface area that’s exposed to the cooler air- hence making the cake cool faster. It’s all about Physics. Ya’ know. Thanks, Einstein.
And then put these big lego-block sized cake pieces into a bowl, and with a fork, do this:
I said use a ‘fork’, and in this picture, I have a knife. Oh well. You get the point, Mac.
Once you’ve properly mutilated your delectable cake that now looks like nothing other than a mess of crumbs with a knife sticking in it, add 3/4 of jar of this stuff: [and try not to spoon it into your mouth while you do]
Save the ‘Box Tops’ for education and give them to your local school. I’m into education. and frosting.
Notice I’ve used Ms. Crocker’s ‘Whipped topping‘ for my frosting. Why is that? Well, I’m so glad you’ve asked. Whipped topping is a little lighter and airy-er? than its regular frosting counterpart, and thus when you make the cake bite it serves for a lighter inside filling. Only because once you’ve dipped the cake bite in chocolate it might be too overpoweringly sweet. (not that could be a bad thing, right?)
Once you’ve poured in the frosting, go ahead and make cake-sized bites by using a cookie dough spoon or just measuring out even spheres with your hands. Roll up all the mix, place them on a wax paper covered plate, and stick them in the: Fridge (for 2-3 hours) OR Freezer (for 1 hour). It’s your take on how long you want to wait to make these. And it all depends on how much room you have in your freezer. [If you like the traditional cake pop, this is the time to stick the lollipop stick into the cake bite- BEFORE it hits the cold air and shivers up into a neat little bite.]
Once you’ve waited the 2-3 or 1 hour (hopefully you didn’t wait tooooo long), get your chocolate ready.
I’ve used the double-boiler method. Here’s the secret to getting good, creamy, runny, delicious dunking chocolate: Put the double boiler on LOW/MEDIUM heat- just rolling bubbles- not like you’re boiling pasta water. Now, as soon as the chocolate begins to look glossy like it’s going to tear up and melt, ADD OLIVE OIL. (OR whatever vegetable oil you have on hand). Add about 2-3 tablespoons, more if you’ve got more chocolate. The oil prevents the chocolate from ‘seizing’ up and looking like the block of foam you find inside a 3 Musketeers bar. Trust me on this. Take it from someone who’s seized chocolate.
This photo shot: shows the chocolate just a bit after it felt like melting, and since then I’ve added a tad bit more olive oil. Olive oil is wonderful. One of these days I’ll have to write a blog post about it.
Now, as fast as you can, and begin dip, dunk, rock and roll (just kidding- don’t ‘rock’, just roll) the semi-frozen-still-cold cake bites into the chocolate. Melt semi-sweet chocolate chips, White chocolate, Peanut-butter chocolate, and any other chocolate you can find and dunk/dip/drizzle the cake pops with them. If you’re adding sprinkles, sprinkle them up now too.
Lastly, set the cake bites onto a wax paper and stick them in the fridge (this time NOT the freezer). I’ve put my cake bites in the fridge overnight- it helps it set much better this way. And it make for a great breakfast in the morning. No joke there.
I took these pics of the cake bites while they were still ‘fridge-ing’: hence why there’s a shadow, making for a lack of quality shot. But hey, this ain’t food-network 😉 and they were still absolutely delicious!