Monday, March 11, 2013

Come on, who doesn't love Elmo! How could you deny that cute furry little red face of his!
 I was so excited when a dear friend Nicole asked me to make Elmo themed cake pops for her sweet baby Kinlee's 1st birthday party. I knew these were going to be a blast to make!  First things first though, I needed a new work station.  As much as I love me some Matt Wertz Pandora and my glass of wine, the kitchen table was not going to suffice for this all day adventure.

So check out my new set up! It may not be the biggest workspace, but it's perfect for enjoying a nice Friday night SVU marathon with my glass of Pinot Noir (I decided to switch it up this weekend, but I still stand by my Malbec).
And yes that is my Stockings, Elves and Christmas Tree you see..don't judge.  I'm stuck in the Christmas spirit, and with all this crazy weather we've been having I bet you wish your tree was up when that snow's falling. 

Okay, I know it's going to have to come down.  Right after I return from the Dominican Republic next week. I don't think the tree will compliment my beautiful tan very well hehe. Yeah I'm trying to make you jealous, is it working?

Anyway back to the cake pops! I think I underestimated the concept of making 75 pops.  In my head it seemed like an easy task, as I usually make about 20-25.. How hard could it be? Hard, not so much. Time consuming, absolutely.
 
Mainly because I am a freakish perfectionist when it comes to this kind of stuff. You would think polka dots could just be scattered wherever the stick landed..normal right? Yeah too bad I'm far from normal. This is where the engineer in me came out and I strategically mapped out the placing of each dot so that they were perfectly even.  Someone please help me!

Materials:
Red White and Chocolate Candy Melts (I used Make 'n Mold brand)
Candy eyeballs 
Orange Jelly Beans
Red and White Sanding Sugar
Red non- perriels
Lollipop sticks
Treat Bags
Piping bag
Cookie Scoop
Now speaking from experience and doing some research, red chocolate can be rather temperamental to work with.  However, I was very satisfied with the Make 'n Mold brand and had no trouble.  *Make sure you heat it in 30 second intervals stirring in between, and if it's a little thick just add a touch of vegetable oil to thin it out in the process!
The faces were pretty simple: with half a candy melt mouth, jelly bean nose and candy eyes..voila!
Thank goodness I picked up this little gadget on my last trip to AC Moore.  I'm not sure how or why I survived without one of these before, but I'm so glad I never have to again.  It's something I've desperately needed, seeing as my pops used to range in size from a gigantic clementine to a grape depending on my grab that day.
 After you scoop them out onto a tray or pan, roll them tight into the cake balls (shown on top).  Place in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes or so. 

Dip the sticks in chocolate, insert into the balls and let harden.  Then dip the pop and gently tap the stick on the edge of the bowl to remove excess chocolate.  Stand up to dry in either a cake pop stand or a piece of styrofoam. 

Elmo pops:
For the Elmo faces, do the first coat as normal and let it harden, then dipped the pop a second time.  As the chocolate is drying, use the end of an extra lollipop stick to pull the chocolate to create the look of fur. 

Allow that coat to dry and harden before adding on the mouth, nose and eyes using chocolate.

Swirls and Polka Dots:
Using a piping bag filled with melted chocolate, start the swirls at the top of the pop and work your way down (you may want to turn it on its side as you go around).  Stop after every 2 rows or so to add sanding sugar or the sprinkles of your choice before the chocolate hardens!

As for the polka dots, you can use the piping bag as well or just simply dip the end of a stick.  Add sprinkles after each dot before it dries, then move on.
Happy 1st Birthday Babygirl! :)

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