milk&honey cafe

Monday, December 08, 2008

Sweet as a cake ball

cake balls

What's round, bite-sized, and ridiculously sweet? Yes! A cake ball! In celebration of the end of my fall semester and in welcoming the wonderful holidays, I have baked round morsels of sweetness for the church kids and of course, myself. It seemed like a perfectly delightful idea. Moist cake mixed in with delicious cream cheese frosting that is rolled into a ball, which is then enrobed with smooth chocolate. These cake balls are quite the fad right now. It's been made quite popular by the blogger Bakerella and even appeared on the Martha Stewart Show with her cupcake shaped cake pops (cake balls on a stick) and lots of people have been doing it. Anyways, I decided to just go with the simple chocolate ones as my first try.


Oh but was I in for a surprise. Let me tell you, bakerella really makes it look easy. Her balls are perfect and her photos are flawless and so it sounded easy enough.

But dear-oh! It is a lot of work. I wanted to make two batches (about 100-120 cake balls) to take it for the church kids on Sunday. But ended up with a sore back and bare cake balls still waiting in the freezer to be clothed by chocolate. I mean, it doesn't seem all that hard. You bake the cake. Make the frosting. Mix the two. Roll the sticky mix into balls. Freeze them until hard. Melt your chocolate. Dip and enrobed with chocolate. Let sit and harden. But if only it was this easy. It is a messy, tedious and long process. It takes a lot of hand-done work and waiting and stirring and rolling and washing hands ever 5 minutes.

cake balls

Okay.. Maybe I'm being a bit too hard on the cake balls. I am indeed embarrassed to complain about work involved, because which delicious food is ever easy? It all takes HEART work. And I am proud of this. But I guess it's just a warning to anyone who wants to try it. Or maybe you would do a much much better job than me! :)

cake balls

Another surprise was the intensity of the sweetness. Triple wammy goodness = triple wammy sweetness. Oh indeed sweet it is. You don't quite notice it when you just eat one. It is still sweet but you can wash it out with a glass of milk or water. Oh but if you dare to have more than one, your stomach will turn sour. The kids loved it! These sweet balls were greeted delightfully by the kids and possibly blamed for them bouncing off the walls this Sunday. Hehe.

cake balls

In any case, though, I do not give up on these balls. Next time I make it (and there will be a next time!) I will use a less sweet recipe for the cake, maybe a dark devil's chocolate with less sugar or a red velvet, and much much less sugar in the cream cheese frosting. The frosting is there really just for softening and moistening the cake. I think i can even cut the frosting amount to half to three quarters because they were too sticky to work with anyway. And hopefully I'll be a bit more patient in dipping the balls in the chocolate so they'll turn out prettier.

Anyways. All in all, it was a great learning experience. And fun, of course!

cake balls

1 comment:

  1. LOL
    I can totally relate to your post. I think bakerella is some sort of evil genius to have come up with cake pops, but I can't let the cake pop beat me so I keep on making them. :)
    I've made several batches since November, so I might be able to give you a tip. I found that the best ones are made with chocolate cake and a can of chocolate frosting. I know you made your own frosting, but with all the work that goes into the rest of this, I think a can of frosting is totally acceptable! I also use my food processor to get the crumbs all small and uniform. I also prefer dipping in chocolate. We call it "triple chocolate." They really taste like a truffle and not cake that way. My biggest hurdle is always the coating. The frozen balls harden up my candy coating too much. It's always kind of a trial and error process for me, but I just keep making them. I don't know how bakerella does it so perfectly!
    Keep trying!