Craft numero uno: cake pops

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I don’t know how many of you celebrate Christmas at least 3 times with different sides of your family, but we sure do. Amid the hubbub, I managed to squeak out craft #1: cake pops. I know, I know. There’s no element of real danger minus the Gorilla Glue, but I had to start somewhere.

A reason I’m happy with these, aside from them coming out looking quite pretty and appealing, is that this mommy of three (two of which were “helping” wearing huge smiles and little aprons, grabbing at the ingredients with little helper-elf fingers) is because I figured out a short cut way to get them done, bypassing some of the more complicated recipes. (Ain’t nobody got time for that.)

Have a few small kiddos begging to help, and don’t want to bust out half of your baking ingredients? You’re nodding. You get it. We’re on the same page.

You’ll need:

  • A box of any type of cake mix and all ingredients for that mix (consult the box) – I normally stay away from anything with artificial coloring in it, but this time, I used red velvet, cause after all, ’tis the season.
  • 1 cup of flour
  • A cake pop maker
  • Melting chocolate of your choice
  • Decorative flair of your choice (sprinkles, syrup, etc.)
  • Treat bags
  • Lollipop sticks
  • A colander

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How to:

Step 1: Prepare the cake batter as per the box directions, and add 1 cup of flour to stiffen it up. You want it to be just a little thick, but not so thick that you can’t stir it easily.

Step 2: Blob a teaspoon full or so cake batter into your cake pop maker, pop it shut, and wait for the ready light. If you’re like me, you will be asked “Are they ready yet?” at least 17 times by your eager, smiley assistants as you wait while you reminisce about how this act reminds you of your mornings at college making amazing, giant waffles with perfect square craters for syrup in the cafeteria’s breakfast bar. Moving on…

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Step 3: Remove the cake pop balls, and set them aside. Warning to your baking assistants: they are HOT. H-O-T, hot.

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Step 4: Heat and melt the chocolate according to the package directions. Be super careful NOT to overheat the chocolate. There’s no going back if you seize it.

Step 5: Take the cake pop stick and dip the end of it in the melted chocolate, then place the cake pop on it. I’ve found that the chocolate acts as a cement of sorts. A delicious one.

Step 6: Spoon your chocolate over the cake pop, and decorate them with whatever sprinkles or syrup you’d like. If you feel like your chocolate is too thick, add a little (very little at a time) bit of milk and stir until it’s to your liking.

Step 7: I bet you were wondering what the colander was for. Turn your colander upside down, and insert the cake pops into the holes. Voila. No lopsided cake pops when they’re dried! If you want to speed things up, let these babies dry and harden in the fridge before you package them up.

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Craft #1: success! Next up is this candle holder. If you see me foraging for twigs in the snow, you’ll know why.