A couple days ago, my mother returned to Tokyo, her suitcases packed with goodies from the States. Among them were a number of new and exciting baking implements, including a cake pop pan! I couldn’t resist. So, last night, I made an inaugural batch of pops.
Traditionally, cake pops are made by mashing together cake and icing in order to get neat little rotund structures. With a pan, all you need is a nice, dense cake or, alternatively, brownie batter.
As this was my first attempt, I followed the chocolate cake instructions on the packaging, making just a couple alterations, like adding vanilla – every recipe of this ilk can benefit from a splash.
When the batter was finished, I spooned it into the pan, put the cover on, and slid it into the oven.
While we waited, my mother and I completed the New York Times crossword over tea and stolen bites of batter.
Finally, twenty minutes were up, and out they came.
Now, for the assembly.
For the cake pops’ chocolate coating, I purchased couverture chocolate, high quality chocolate made with extra cocoa butter. This confection melts quickly and hardens beautifully with a lovely, smooth sheen.
I usually melt chocolate in a double boiler. But as I was a little short on time, pyrex and microwaving, it was. The white chocolate got a little singed on top. Not to worry! Everything always turns out for the best. The little bits of crusted white chocolate ended up tasting like praline, not to mention add a satisfying crunch to the coating.
Recipe for 24 cake pops (includes extra batter for eating)
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup butter (I used a scant half cup since many recipes seem to add too much.)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- a nice dose of vanilla
- lollipop sticks (I didn’t have any so I tried jumbo toothpicks… They worked but orchestrating decorations and coating was bit tricky.)
- approx. 400 g couverture chocolate (I used half white, half dark. The choice is up to you!)
1. Heat the oven to 375ºF and grease the pan. Greasing both sides completely is important as it ensures easy pop extrication.
2. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate and butter together. Stir until smoothly mixed.
3. Pour the chocolate mixture into a new bowl and add the following gradually, beating as you go: sugar and cocoa powder, then eggs and vanilla, then flour and salt.
4. Generously spoon the batter into the bottom half of the pan, cover it up, and bake for 20-22 min, or until a toothpick comes out almost completely clean.
5. Allow the cake pops to cool for about 5 min before removing them from the pan and let them cool completely before inserting lollipop sticks.
6. Carefully melt the couverture.
7. Insert a lollipop stick into each pop. I didn’t try this, but I’ve heard that dipping it into a bit of melted couverture can help it stay in.
8. Dip each pop into the melted chocolate and delicately spin it to get rid of excess chocolate. Sprinkle on desired decorations and set on a sheet of wax paper.
9. Place your sheet of wax paper (on a plate) into the fridge for 15 min to harden the chocolate coating and you’re done. These treats will not disappoint!