I never intended to make cake pops.
This post was supposed to be a towering beauty of a Nigella Lawson chocolate fudge cake. Layers of moist, rich cake, sandwiched with fudgey, buttery icing. I had a cake disaster though. My spring form cake tin sprung itself open in the oven. The kitchen filled with a horrible burning smell as the leaked cake started to weld itself to the bottom of the oven. I was left with one little layer of chocolate fudge cake, and my one and only round cake tin was broken. A lesson learnt the hard way; never buy cheap cake tins.
So these little cake pops are the ‘up-cycled’ remains of that cake disaster. Little chocolate covered, fudgey phoenixes, rising from the ashes of my blacked spilt cake.
They’re much easier than they look, and oh so much fun to make. With so many complex baking recipes calling for exact timings, specialised ingredients and precise technique, it’s nice to bake something so light-hearted. Sticking your hands into a bowl full of chocolatey goo and bringing them out coated in chocolate, makes you feel like a child. I spent a very happy afternoon in front of Downton Abbey box-sets, rolling the balls in my hands and dipping them into molten chocolate. I’d be lying if I said all of the mixture made it into the finished pops.
You know what, I’m kind of glad my cake collapsed. I’m a little bit I’m in love with cake pops.
Biting into a thick layer of chocolate with a satisfying crunch, into gooey, rich chocolate cake was more than enough to cure me of my cake disaster grump.
Chocolate Fudge Cake Pops
(Makes about 10 cake pops)
Enough cake to fill an eight inch cake tin at a depth of about an inch. I was using about a thirdof Nigella Lawson’s Chocolate Fudge Cake recipe, but you could use whatever sponge cake recipe you fancy, a packet cake mix would even work well.
2tbsp butter, softened
2tbsp cocoa powder
2tbsp icing sugar
200g dark chocolate
sprinkles to decorate
Cook your cake according to the recipe, let it fully cool. Crumble your cake into a bowl.
Beat the icing sugar and cocoa powder into the butter, using a little warm water as needed.
Using your hands, slowly work the butter-icing into the cake. Don’t be tempted to use a spoon, you need to feel when there is enough butter icing in the mixture. You want to be able to be able to roll the mixture into a ball, without it becoming too wet.
Use a small ice cream scoop or something similar (I used a tbsp measure) to divide the mixture into evenly sized balls. Roll them round in your hands until they are smooth.
Put the balls on a tray, cover with cling-film and put them in the freezer for about 20 minutes. This will help keep your cake pops together when you dunk them in the chocolate.
Meanwhile, melt your chocolate in a bowl over a pan of gently boiling water.
Gently put each ball of cake on a stick. There are such things as specific cake pop sticks, but I used shorten bamboo kebab sticks and they worked perfectly well. Dip each one into the melted chocolate, spoon extra chocolate over until your cake ball is full covered.
Stand each one up-right to cool. You could stick them into a block of polystyrene, but I covered a tall jug with a doubled up layer of tin foil and stuck the stick through.
Decorate them however you fancy. I used simple sprinkles, but you can really let your imagination run wild. Check out bakerella for some amazing ideas.