I’d like to introduce you to my first batch of cake pops.
Their full name is Chocolate Cake Pop Truffles With Maple Buttercream Frosting, Swirled In Blue-Dyed White Chocolate And Topped With Baby-Boy-Blue Sprinkles.
But you can call them cake pop truffles for short.
I mentioned a few days ago that I had cake pops on the brain. I watched the Bakerella videos (um, plus lots of others), and I just had to turn out perfect little cake pops for the bris our friends are making tomorrow morning.
The dipping chocolate would be blue, of course. And the sprinkles would be blue. And the rest would be magical.
There were a few problems.
The first was that I don’t exactly keep lollipop sticks in the house, and you kind of need those for cake pops. My makolet doesn’t stock them, either. Maybe there’s some specialty shop somewhere in this country that carries them, but I didn’t have time to search. (Note: Ask the next friend visiting from the States to bring some from Michael’s. Friend, are you reading this?)
The other thing was that I didn’t have candy melts or chocolate bark. I’ve melted chocolate chips for lots of other recipes, though, so I figured that would just have to do.
Well, what it did was nearly ruin my cake pops. But I’ll get to that in a minute.
The first part of the recipe went just fine: I baked the cake and made the frosting, then mushed and smushed to my heart’s content. The cake mixture had a nice consistency, soft but not too soft, and after a bit of time in the freezer and fridge, it was perfect for rolling into bite-sized balls.
And then I melted the chocolate.
I had nearly written off this recipe as “can’t possibly make this pareve” because of my limited baking supplies, when a reader suggested I just melt chocolate in the oven in a disposable pan (brownie points for Laura).
I don’t know what happened. I guess oven heat isn’t like stove top heat. I mean, it melted, but it was so…thick. It definitely did not drip from a spoon like the chocolate in the Bakerella videos.
I added some margarine and stirred. I added some canola oil and stirred. Desperate, I added some almond liqueur and stirred. It helped, but not enough. It was still not dip-able.
I was just about to have a minor panic attack that my 53 cake balls would be woefully bare. And then my husband suggested I try using the chocolate anyway. Just, you know, see what happens.
Oh. Okay. Right.
So I tried. And you know what? It didn’t dip, but it swirled. And I ended up with smooth little melted chocolate “hats” that are pretty cute if I do say so myself. The sprinkles sealed the deal, of course.
They aren’t perfect, but I like them anyway. They’re delicious, so that could be a factor. I may not be able to taste the coffee in the cake batter and the maple syrup in the buttercream, but there’s no two ways about it.
Now if you’ll just excuse me for a minute. It’s 12:45 a.m. Cake pop truffle time.
Chocolate cake pop truffles with maple buttercream
Yield: About 53 cake pop truffles
Step 1: Bake the Cake
Vegan chocolate cake for cake pops
Adapted slightly from Pragmatic Attic
- 1 ¾ cups flour
- ¾ cup cocoa powder (Dutch process, if you can)
- 2/3 cup sugar (original recipe calls for a full cup, but since you’ll be mixing it with frosting, I found this was enough)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 cup coffee (instant is fine)
- ½ cup canola oil
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 350 F/180 C.
2. Combine flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt in a mixing bowl. Mix well to evenly incorporate the cocoa powder (look out for and break up lumps).
3. Add coffee, vanilla, and oil. Mix until wet and dry ingredients are evenly combined.
4. Pour batter into a greased 9″ round pan and bake 25-30 minutes, or until firm so that a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool before removing from pan.
Step 2: Make the Frosting
Tweaked from Bakingdom’s French Toast Cupcakes
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened (or margarine if making pareve)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ¾ tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp salt
- 4 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp heavy cream (I used Rich’s whip)
1. Beat the butter on high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the sugar until combined, then stir in the vanilla, salt, and maple syrup. Add the cream and whisk on high for 4 minutes.
Step 3: Make the cake pop truffles
- about ½ bag white chocolate chips
- food coloring, if you like
- butter/margarine, canola oil, or flavored liqueur, for thinning melted chocolate
- sprinkles/other decorations
1. Break apart the cake into fine crumbs. If you ever wanted to stick your hands in a cake, this is your day.
2. Mix maple buttercream frosting into the cake crumbs. (It won’t seem like a lot of frosting, but if you use this recipe’s cake with this recipe’s frosting, the proportions should be fine.) Mix until you get a smooth consistency.
3. Form the cake mixture into truffle-sized (bite-sized) balls. Lay them on a baking sheet and transfer to the freezer for 15 minutes.
4. Move the baking sheet to the fridge for another 45 minutes or so. (If you’ll be using them much later or the next day, cover them.) If you have two trays, leave the second one in the fridge while you’re dipping the first in chocolate.
5. Melt the chocolate chips in a double boiler, then add butter/margarine, canola oil, or liqueur as needed to thin it out. (See my notes in the post above.) If you like, mix in 2-3 drops of food coloring at this point. If your chocolate reached dipping consistency, stick a toothpick about halfway into each cake pop and dip into the chocolate to fully cover. Gently tap to remove excess chocolate, sprinkle decorations over the top, and place back on the baking sheet (you can remove the toothpick at this point). If your chocolate is too thick for dipping, you can give each cake pop a little swirl in the chocolate, holding it firmly between your thumb and forefinger to cover about half the cake pop. Bring it straight out from the chocolate to get the “Hershey’s kiss” hat-like pointed top. Sprinkle with decorations and place on the baking sheet.
6. Store cake pop truffles in the fridge.