A Better Written Recipe: The Cake Pops
It felt SO. good. to sweat this morning. I always crave a good sweat session after taking a brief hiatus from exercise, and this workout completely squashed that craving.
After a 40 minutes FB strength workout (New Rules of Lifting for Abs) and a 45 minute sweat spin session, I came home for second breakfast. Second breakfast featured a little gem I finally got the opportunity to try, Love Grown granola.
Tina was handing out individual sized bags (which is the best idea EVER for granola over-proportioners like me!!) at the Healthy Living Summit, and I must say that I loved the crunch it gave to top a smoothie.
The flavor combinations were pretty stellar, too
This weekend at the Healthy Living Summit, the presentations started off with a bang! The vivacious and knowledgeable Stepfanie Romine, editor of Daily Spark, kicked it off with a presentation on how to write a better recipe for your blog.
Her presentation was easy to follow, as she dissected examples of well-written recipes on blogs as well as scrutinizing the details of poorly written recipe example (making sure to keep the poorly-written recipe author completely anonymous.)
Admittedly, I found myself shrinking down in my chair as she listed several mistakes of which I declare myself guilty. Let’s just say I’ll be going through my recipes page here pretty soon to do some editing. As my English teacher of a mother always says, “you’re never finished editing!”
The biggest takeaway for me, were the necessary components of a well-written recipe:
- Prep and cook times
- Headnote and tips
She also mentioned a few tips such as leaving out any random capitalization. For example, chicken breasts doesn’t need to be Chicken Breasts. Another was to make sure to let your readers know up front if there will be any substantial lag time (letting dough to rise, freeze over night, etc) in between steps.
With that said, my cake pops seemed to be a big hit this weekend at the Healthy Living Summit as well as with my husband and his friends.
Now, there are many, many methods of making cake pops that all resemble each other, but I got this specific recipe with its specific methods and tweaks from a client, who’s declared to have perfected the art of making simple cake pops.
I used her recipe with her tips and tricks. However, I’m sure it was somehow inspired by Bakerella. So here it goes, my first “better-written” recipe, cake pops!
For my cake pops, I used a Duncan Heine’s moist box mix, and it came out just that – moist. If you choose a box mix that comes out drier, make sure to use a tbsp or two more of the icing. Or you can make your own cake if that suits your fancy. After adding the icing, it should resemble a dough. It shouldn’t be wet and it shouldn’t be crumbly either. I broke my baking into thirds. I baked the cake the night before, and let it cool. The next morning I added the frosting, and put it back in the fridge. Then I made the balls, and refrigerated once again. Making them really cold first lessens the chance of the balls falling off the stick*.
The method I used to coat my pops was the dunk and twirl method, shown here around :59 seconds.
Cook time: 35 minutes, or as directed on your cake mix box
Prep time: 45 minutes
Yield: Makes about 50 pops
1 box chocolate cake mix + ingredients box directions call for (eggs and water, likely)
1/2 can cream cheese frosting
1 (24-ounce) package of chocolate or vanilla almond bark
1 package 50 lollipop sticks
sprinkles, for decorating
cellophane + ribbons, for packaging
Bake the box cake mix as directed and let cool completely either in fridge or on its own. Once cool, crumble finely into a large bowl using either your hands or a food processor. Stir in the frosting until well incorporated. Refrigerate for at least an hour. Using about a tbsp of dough at a time, roll into little balls. Put back in the fridge to cool for at least an hour. Heat your almond bark by breaking up the squares in a medium bowl, and microwave in 15 second increments, stirring until melted.
Take the balls out of the fridge, and dip just the tips of the lollipop stick* in the melted chocolate and insert half way through the balls. This helps the cake balls stay on the sticks. Now you’re ready to start coating. Take the cake pops by the lollipop sticks, and dunk into the melted almond bark until completely submerged, and then gently twirl the stick around between your fingers, flinging off extra candy coating. If you’re decorating, decorate now with sprinkles before the coating dries. Then set the cake pop, lollipop stick up, on a piece of parchment paper to dry. After you’re finished with them all, you can individually wrap in cellophane, and tie with a piece of ribbon to make them look pretty.
How’s I do, Stepfanie?
*do you know how hard it was not to say TWSS here? But I didn’t, because that’s probably not part of a better written recipe
I’ll be posting this recipe on my desserts page, soon.
Off to the grocery store! It’s slim pickin’s in this household right now.
What are some pet peeves you notice about bloggers posting recipes on their blogs?
How about the positive side? What do you especially like when a blogger does something in regards to a recipe?
Have a great afternoon, friends!