Tuesday, October 26, 2010

BOO!

I love Halloween. I love the decorations, the costumes, and the weather. I also love having an excuse to eat a whole bag of mini sized Butterfinger bars. Or a dozen little ghost shaped cake pops...


Don't they just beg to have their little heads bitten off? I realize I am evil. I have accepted that fact.



I made a special one in honor of my favorite Halloween movie, It's The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown! 



Can't you just picture this little guy saying "I got a rock....."? Poor Charlie Brown, he depresses me a little. I would share my cake pops with him if I could, maybe he just needs some sugar. 


These pops would probably fit that bill. Just a touch of sugar on these little guys. They look like they have done something mischievous, yes? 



Too bad I didn't get a picture of the drunk looking ghosts. I may need to work on my piping skills.

This round of cake pops used a spooky black velvet cake with a dark gray cream cheese frosting. They WILL dye your mouth black, but only for a minute or two, I promise. Its worth it though. Maybe you could try working a black tinted mouth into your Halloween costume. Just sayin. 



Black Velvet Cake Pops with Cream Cheese Frosting (Ghosts and Pumpkins!)
makes about 40-50 cake pops, depending on how big you roll them 

Cake: 

2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 - 1 ounce bottle of black liquid food coloring
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon white vinegar

Butter and flour your cake pans and set aside. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl sift the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl, mix the food coloring and cocoa powder until completely incorporated. Set aside.

In a stand mixer (or using a hand mixer) cream the butter and sugar on medium high speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, and beat until thoroughly combined, being sure to scrape down the sides. Add the vanilla and the red food coloring-cocoa mixture and beat well to combine. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture, beat on medium speed until combined, then add 1/2 of the buttermilk, and beat until incorporated. Add another 1/3 of the flour, beat well, then the other half of the buttermilk, scraping down the sides after each addition. Finish with the last 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat until just combined.

In a small bowl, mix the vinegar and baking soda, and immediately add to batter. Mix on high speed for just a few seconds until evenly dispersed, and pour right away into cake pans or lined cupcake pans.

Bake 2 9-inch cakes for about 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool completely before making your pops! 

Frosting: 

16 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2-3 tablespoons black food coloring (enough to make the frosting a dark gray color)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
pinch of salt

In a stand mixer, combine the cream cheese and butter, and beat on medium high speed until smooth. Add the vanilla and salt and mix until incorporated. Gradually add the sugar, and beat until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.Beat in the food coloring until nice and dark. You want it to be dark enough so that your cake doesn't turn gray from adding a ton of fluffy white frosting.

Pops:

2-3 bags white candy melts
50 or so lollipop sticks
Cake, baked and cooled
Frosting, room temperature
black piping frosting (I just used Wilton ready-to-decorate icing tubes)
Orange sprinkles

When the cakes are room temperature, crumble them into a large bowl with your fingers until broken up into pea-sized bits. Mix in 1 and 1/4 cups of the frosting to start with, using either a large wooden spoon, or you hands if you want to get messy. Mix until the frosting is evenly dispersed. Take a quarter sized about of the cake mixture and try rolling it into a ball with the palms of your hands. If it stays together, continue to roll the rest of your cake mixture into balls and place them on a parchment or wax paper lined baking sheet. If they fall apart or do not hold together, add a little more frosting until the mix is moist enough to allow you to roll an intact ball. If you are making ghosts, mold into a tapered shape instead of a round ball.


Once you have rolled all the cake mix into balls or ghosts, place in refrigerator and chill for about 1 hour. When the cake balls have been chilled, melt a small amount of the candy melts in a microwave safe bowl according to package directions. Take one of the sticks, dip about 1/2 inch of the end into the melted candy and stick it about half to three-quarters of the way through the bottom flat part of the cake ball or ghost. Don't go too far into the cake ball, or it will fall apart. The candy melts will help adhere the stick to the cake.

Once the cake pops have been chilled, melt the rest of the package of candy melts according to package directions, and add your candy coloring, if using. I kept the majority of the cake pops in the freezer and took them out about 5 at a time. This way, the whole pan of cake pops doesn't come up to room temperature while you are dipping the first batch.  

One at a time, dip the cake pops into the melted candy coating being sure to get the coating all the way up over where the stick is attached to really seal it in. GENTLY tap off the excess coating on the edge of the bowl while rotating the cake pop, to get a even layer all the way around. 
Stick the coated pop ghost side up into a Styrofoam block to dry. If you are doing the sparkling pumpkins, coat with sprinkles immediately after dipping each pop. For the ghosts, let cake pops cool and dry for at least 30 minutes before piping the faces on.  Let all decorations set for at least an hour before packaging them up. They can be frozen in plastic Ziploc bags, if you put them in the refrigerator the candy coating will weep and become sticky. If you are not using cream cheese frosting, they can be kept at room temperature for a few days.

11 comments:

char said...

This is pure genius!

Mary said...

These are so much fun! Great work!

Mary xo
Delightful Bitefuls

Bakeolicious said...

What gorgeous cake pops. You are very creative!

I’d love for you to submit one of your beautiful photos, and a link to your post, to my new baking photo gallery showcasing the beautiful baking, sweets and desserts.

Anonymous said...

Bria, I love this blog! Can you do a healthy cake pop for the health conscious calorie counters out there. I'm not sure if you covered it before in your blog as i'm new here and haven't gone through the archives. Also your photos are spectacular! What make and model camera do you use?

Regards,
LM

The Urban Baker said...

I missed the boat on making these, but I wanted to. They are adorable and sweet and super festive! What's on tap for Thanksgiving?

Bria said...

Thank you everyone! They were really fun to make, almost as much fun as they were to eat :-)

Bakeolicious, thanks for stopping by and alerting me of your new site. I will submit some pictures in the weeks to come for sure!

LM,
Haha. Oh thats not really my forte. I use a LOT of butter and and LOT of sugar here on this blog. The good thing is about cake pops though, is that they have built in portion control. One little pop is going to do much less damage than if you put a giant piece of coke in front of you. Plus you should treat yourself once in a while ;-) Oh an I use a Pentax K100 DSLR (still figuring out how to use it, thats for sure!!)

Susan,

oh lord I haven't even thought about thanksgiving yet!! I believe I have four separate celebrations lined up starting this weekend so I better get cookin huh?

Bria said...

and one more thing...I meant a giant piece of CAKE, not a giant piece of COKE. That would be a whole different problem altogether :-)

Anonymous said...

What a talent you have with these. I hate to say this but I think someone is stealing your photos and more than one and claiming them as their own. :-( I know if that was mine I would be really upset. Here is a link to on several she has stolen of yours.

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=277805668905553&set=a.267091036643683.72263.267086479977472&type=1&theater

Lindy@Itsy Bitsy Paper said...

This is a great post for Halloween Cake Balls! I featured it on Fun Friday Finds today. I hope you can stop by and grab a featured button if you'd like.
http://www.itsybitsypaperblog.com/2011/10/funfridayfinds-halloween-cakes.html

Anonymous said...

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Amanda said...

I love the Charlie Brown ghost cake pop! :)

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