Check out part I to see everything up to this point. Or just jump straight into the exciting part! (The what?) When we left off, I had a plate full of frozen cake balls… or did I? Well, on their way to freezing anyway. 😉 Shortly before they were ready to come out of the freezer, we were instructed to melt the red candy wafers. This is accomplished just via microwave – stick them in, stir every 30 seconds, until they’re smooth. My daughter got to handle that part, and we enjoyed watching the get progressively softer and sweatier (haha) until they weren’t just mushy, they were absolutely liquid.
By the way, that bowl is a lot smaller than it looks… just saying. 🙂 SO we took the cake balls out of the freezer, and I carefully stuck the first one onto the first stick and dunked it into the red topping… and it promptly fell apart. Even though I had expected something like this, it still resulted in a bit of a panic from all involved and I ended up kind of squeezing it together, remolding, smoothing the topping over it, etc and I ended with something that was really chunky and awful looking. YAY! 😄
This was also how I discovered that the candy topping hardens when it cools, and it will do that quickly on your fingers. So you get these amazing waxy red fingers. It’s actually AWESOME, I’m not joking. I wish I could have taken a picture of this but I’m hoping you understand why I couldn’t. 🙂
Anyway, we proceeded delicately – putting the sticks in only lightly, being careful with the topping, etc. By doing this we got a few that looked about how they were supposed to, and another few that were kind of in between, and one or two that just plain split into two pieces and, tragically, had to be eaten. SO SAD. I decided we would pop the second half of the balls back into the freezer and be ready to remelt the topping if needed; meanwhile, we would make the green glaze.
I also really hope you like our soups. ^_~ Anyway, the glaze was fun to make, although it was another full cup of confectioner’s sugar that was largely wasted. The resulting glaze was, in my and my husband’s shared opinion, too sweet to consume – even the smell is just like inhaling pure sugar. But it looks awesome.
So we went back to drizzle this over the cake pops we’d already done… only to find out that the glaze is not thick enough to settle on top of the pops, and the topping on the pops had hardened so that it was slightly waterproof, so the glaze pretty much ran straight down it and onto the pop-holder base. D’oh! Well, in any case, we were ready to try again with the second half of the pops.
This time went slightly better, though definitely not perfect. The cakes really weren’t any more solid than they had been before, just a little bit cooler. We did OK when I put the ball gently onto the stick, but my son, with a 4-year-old’s lack of strength awareness, would just push the whole thing right into the topping and they’d usually break apart again, at least a little. So there was still a lot of gently pushing back together, and we went through a lot of the topping that way. It turned out the glaze wasn’t much easier to get properly onto the pops even when they were still wet; that topping just shuns liquid, and the glaze was simply not that thick. So we just kept spooning, and it kept running onto the counter, but as I’ve said, the glaze is so sweet as to be inedible. So you really don’t want that much on there anyway.
So, the results! The quality is all over the place, ranging from “decently passable” to “WHAT IS THAT THING?!” 🙂
Oh, and we nearly forgot the last of the frosting, didn’t we? Well, that was intended for the “stems”. But the frosting was now basically liquid as well, maybe slightly thicker than the glaze. So it was not about to “stack” the way the stems look in the pictures on the front. Instead we got a nice little round drop on the top of each and that was it. Which is also fine, because you may recall, it tasted like popcorn butter. 😛
So, each of the kids got to enjoy one of the pops, in addition to all the licking of fingers and munching on broken ones that had gone on… there were tummy aches and hyperactivity aplenty in the Kelly house last night, my friends! But here we are enjoying our treats:
So, in spite of my semi-sarcastic (or sometimes completely sarcastic) remarks, what is my final verdict on this? A LOT of fun, would do again! I would use real butter instead of margarine, and use only half of the recipe’s confectioner’s sugar quantities, especially on the glaze. I would do the glaze just because it’s so fun to turn it into slime (yes, I am still 6), but it needs to be WAY less sweet.
I would use the glaze again, just because it is part of the desk and does actually look pretty cool, but MAN the sugar rush. Ugh. This is not a snack you can eat in one day unless you have 15-20 people at the ready to eat them. If you’re a family of four, you really can’t stomach 5 pops per person in 12 hours. (Well, we can’t, and we don’t exactly restrict sugar.) I can do without the tiny little tips of the “stems” from the frosting though. That’s really not necessary.
The one thing I DON’T mind is the mess, because it’s just too fun. If you go into it knowing you’re going to have a mess, then it’s really not a big deal. 🙂 It wasn’t all that hard to clean up even though it got everywhere, including the floor. And that candy does involve some scraping once it’s hardened. Be prepared for this stuff and consider putting down papers.
The fact that this is a kit is a big help because you have everything you need, in terms of supplies, readily available. I would not have gone out and bought lollipop sticks, and I would NEVER have thought to have a holed surface to let the dipped pops dry on. This kit was super convenient and the best possible way to make our first set of cake pops. 🙂
And, in spite of how I presented it, they were not all disasters. Some of them actually came out looking close to how I assume they should look! Which, for a first try with two junior chefs, is not bad at all!
All in all, a B+ on this kit! You might be able to find it on eBay; I did find it on Amazon.com for $24. I would not spend that much on it, if I were you. If you’re an experienced cake popper I bet you could adapt this design for yourself for cheaper! 🙂 Otherwise, check toy stores around Halloween time and maybe something will “cake pop” up. Ahahahaha. Ohhhh, I regret writing that…