Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Storage Jar Cookies

I love this idea! My crafty friend Naomi gave me this ready to make jar of cookie ingredients for Xmas with instructions printed on a pretty label. All that needed to be added was a bit of butter, an egg and a splash of vanilla. This recipe was a wintery white chocolate and cranberry one but you could modify your favourite cookie recipe to fit into a jar or use this one or this one






Friday, 13 January 2012

Cake Pop Tips: Painting Pops

The final tip for Friday - how to paint your pops. I hope you've enjoyed this week's series of tips. Don't forget that you can pick up the eBook version of Top of the Cake Pops which will be available at a special promo price later this week.

You need:
Powdered food colouring (also called blossom tint or lustre dust)
Rejuvenator spirit
Fine paint brush
Palate (or something to mix your paint in)
Dipped cake pops (that have dried)


How to:
Mix a small amount of the blossom tint with a few drops of rejuvenator spirit and, with a fine brush, paint on your features. The edible paint will dry in just a couple of minutes.


Thanks to Hardie Grant for letting me share the pics and text from the book. 

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Cake Pop Tips: Sprinkles & Supplies

Ah sprinkles... cake pop stars demand them (as well as a few other supplies like sticks, candy melts and lollipop bags). Here's Thursday's tips on my favourite suppliers and a few alternatives if you're not in the UK...

UK 

AUSTRALIA

US








Thanks to Hardie Grant for letting me share the pics and text from the book. 

Cake Pop Tips: Melting & Dipping

Now that you have your cake balls rolled and chilled you're ready to melt your coating and dip. Here is today's set of instructions and tips. Don't forget that you can also pick up the eBook version of Top of the Cake Pops which will be available at a special promo price later this week.


INGREDIENTS
400 g (14 oz) white candy melts
2 tsp sunflower oil
20 lollipop sticks
Sprinkles or edible glitter to decorate
Polystyrene block



METHOD

1.  Melt the candy melts in a bowl by following the instructions on the packet and stir in the
sunflower oil until smooth.
2. One at a time, dip each lollipop stick about 1 cm into the melted candy melts and push
the stick halfway into each cake ball – this will ensure the ball doesn’t fall off when you dip
it completely. Set aside to dry for a few minutes.
3. Dip the cake ball all the way into the candy melts, covering it completely, then tap off any excess.
4. Place some sprinkles into a small cup and dip the pop into it (or sprinkle directly onto the pop). Tap off any excess and stand in a polystyrene block for about 15 minutes to dry.
TIP: Make sure you make some spaced out holes in your polystyrene block before you start dipping. 
5. Once dry, you can wrap your pops with lollipop-style cellophane bags or store in a tin.
They last for up to one week if stored in a cool place


Tomorrow's tips will be all about sprinkles, supplies and packaging...




Thanks to Hardie Grant for letting me share the pics and text from the book.





Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Cake Pop Tips: Rollin' & Chillin'

Here's the next edition of this week's cake pop tips from Top of the Cake Pops - rollin' and chillin' to make your cake balls (naked cake pops that are ready for sticks and dipping). Once you have your cake and frosting you're ready to start...


INGREDIENTS

480 g (1 lb) cake, cooled
120 g (4 oz) frosting


TIP: Make your cake and frosting the day before to ensure that your cake is cooled and to break up the tasks


METHOD

1. Break up the cake into fine crumbs by hand or in a food processor (much easier).
2. Mix in the frosting until well combined to create a dough. Depending on your cake you may need to add a little bit more frosting to get the mixture to combine well. You can also do this bit in your food processor if you have one.
3. Roll the dough into 20 balls, approximately 30 g (1 oz) each in weight. Place them on a
baking sheet and cover with foil or clingfilm (plastic wrap) before refrigerating for about
2 hours. These basic cake balls are now ready to be dipped as they are, or transformed
into pop stars.


TIP: Make sure that your cake balls are chilled enough that they don't fall off of their sticks but not too chilled and hard as they'll crack the coating as they come to room temperature. This will take a bit of practice as you get used to the temperature of your fridge.


Don't forgot to look out for the eBook version of Top of the Cake Pops which will be available at a special promo price later this week.


Tomorrow we'll be melting & dipping...



Thanks to Hardie Grant for letting me share the pics and text from the book.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Cake Pop Tips: Great Cake (Red Velvet Recipe)

This week I'll be blogging some top cake pop tips and sharing some pics from my book Top of the Cake Pops. First up, great cake pops start with great cake (and frosting). My favourite is red velvet - it gives a beautiful vibrate colour and isn't as sweet as some other choices so goes very well with the cream cheese frosting and cake pop coating. Here's the recipe...

Also, look out for the eBook version of Top of the Cake Pops which will be available at a special promo price later this week.

Red Velvet Cake (from Top of the Cake Pops)

INGREDIENTS 
60 g (2 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
150 g (5 oz) caster (superfine) Sugar
1 large egg (extra-large US Size)
1 tbsp red food colouring
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
150 g (5 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)
120 ml (½ cup) buttermilk
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
1 ½ tsp white wine vinegar
20 cm (8 inch) cake tin, greased and lined

METHOD
1. Preheat the oven to 170ºC (325ºF/gas mark 3).
2. Cream the butter and sugar using a hand-held blender until light and fluffy.
3. Add the egg, red food colouring and vanilla extract. Mix well.
4. Combine the flour and cocoa and add to the mixture with the buttermilk, a third at a
Time. Mix until just incorporated.
5. Add the salt, bicarbonate of soda and white wine vinegar. Mix well.
6. Spoon the mixture into the tin and bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
7. Allow your cake to cool in the tin for about 10 minutes before turning out onto a
Wire rack

Cream Cheese Frosting (from Top of the Cake Pops)
INGREDIENTS 
120 g (4 oz) icing (confectioner’s) sugar
30 g (1 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
30 g (1 oz) cream cheese

METHOD
1. Beat all of the ingredients together using a hand-held mixer until smooth

Makes enough for about 20 pops.

Tomorrow's tip will be 'Rolling and Chilling' (making your cake balls).


Thanks to Hardie Grant for letting me share the pics and text from the book.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Top of the Cake Pops on iTunes & Cake Pop Tips Week

Wow I can't believe the book has been out for 3 months already! It's been fun promoting it so far with this bunch of Biebers, mob of Mochadonnas, crew of Crumbyes and gaggle of GooGoo pop stars getting out and about to spread the word. I've also had props from a Guardian food writer, mentions on some lovely blogs and even on the the telly (!).

Next week Top of the Cake Pops is going to be a featured on iTunes so I'm going to be sharing some pics from the book and top cake pop tip every day - hope you enjoy them!



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