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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Lemon and Orange Orchard Cake Pops - Easy to Make Cake Pop Design

easy cake pop recipe for beginners

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PREFACEBefore you begin to follow this tutorial, you need make cake pop dough. Perform steps 1-5 of my tutorial on making cake pops which are listed HERE. Once you have completed my steps or your own method to make cake ball dough and your dough has set in the fridge or freezer so it is easy to shape, proceed with instructions below to create lemon and orange orchard cake pops.

  • Basic Ingredients to Make Cake Pops (can be found in my tutorial on making cake ball pops HERE.) 
  • For lemon and orange orchard cake pops coating, you will need White Almond Bark or Candy Melts and Brown/Tan, Yellow and Orange Icing Dye or Brown/Tan, Yellow and Orange Colored Candy Melts. 
  • Sprinkles to give some depth to the cake pops. 
  • Green Fondant Surgar Sheets. White sugar sheets will work too if you have a green food writer.
A. CUT OUT LEAVES FROM SUGAR SHEET...SET ASIDEeasy cake pop recipe for beginners
1. Sugar Sheets Can be Cut with Regular Scissors Just Like Paper.
I didn't purchase sugar sheets for a while because the store display made it seem like you couldn't use them unless you bought this whole pattern making and cutting system. (I didn't have a green sheet when I began my orchard cake pops so I used a green FoodWriter on a white sugar sheet to draw and color leaves. I ended up at JoAnne's mid-project though so half of my leaves were cut from a green sugar sheet.)

2. Remember to Remove the Plastic Backing After you Cut Out Your Leaves and before you start to melt your cake pop coating so they are prepped and ready to stick on your cake pops right after dipping.

3. Then Aside on a dry paper towel.

1. Roll Half of Your Dough into Pot Shapes... - Scoop out a small handful of cold dough and squeeze the dough between your hands, rolling it from one hand to the other so the dough is tightly packed. As you knead the dough from hand to hand, start to roll it into a ball and then into a "log". You'll have to work at it a bit to get the terracotta pot shape but as your dough gets packed into a ball/log begin to pound one end on your counter top or palm of  your end at the same time pressing more dough to that same end so you're achieving the pot shape with the top end wider than the bottom. Then roll it out a tad and repeat until you've got a perfect little pot. 

...and Half into Fruit Shapes. - Scoop out a small handful of cold dough and squeeze the dough between your hands, rolling it from one hand to the other so the dough is tightly packed. As you knead the dough from hand to hand, start to roll it into a ball. Roll out round cake balls until the rest of your dough is in shapes. You can roll out some small dough balls to mix into your orchard design. It's best to not have all the fruit the same size. 

2. Freeze to Set - Place your shapes onto an aluminum foil covered cookie sheet and keep in the freezer for about 20 minutes. (Put each shape into the freezer after it's made so the dough can set while you are molding the rest of the dough.) 

1. Prepare your Work Space

  • Foam Board in Freezer - You will need your foam board close or in your freezer. You will be dipping, decorating and setting one cake pop in the foam to dry/set all in the matter of about fifteen seconds so your space will need to be arranged for efficiency. 
  • Dough Balls Near Microwave
  • Aluminum Foil Covering Countertops - I have my foam board in the freezer, my dough balls on a pan next to my microwave, and aluminum foil covering my counter where I coat and sprinkle/decorate the cake balls. 
Crafty Gal Tip: Skewers Instead of Lollis...I use barbeque skewers for sticks. They are long so I break them in half or start by using scissors to cut them in the middle and then break them on the cut. Lolli sticks work just fine, but they are a bit larger in diameter which makes a larger hole in the cake ball when inserted and ultimately the risk of the cake ball sliding down the stick once they become heavier with the chocolate coating is larger too.

2. Secure Terracotta Dough Shapes to Sticks - In order to help your dough shapes stay on the sticks, you need to first dunk the sticks into melted almond bark or candy melts (melting instructions in next step) about 1/2 an inch and then put the melted chocolate end of the stick straight into your dough shapes. Push the stick, coated-end into the bottom or less-wide side of the terracotta pot shape and remember to push it through the pot enough so a good inch and a half is exposed so you can add the fruit shapes. Best that make your entire batch of terracotta pot dough shapes into pops, followed by another short vacation in the freezer with sticks in place, and then begin coating them with melted almond bark or candy melts.

Crafty Gal Tip: Why I Prefer the Microwave to Heat Cake Pop Coating and How to Avoid Burning When Melting and Bubbles or Bleeding from your Final Design...Because I work with different colors and flavors of almond bark/candy coating for one batch of cake balls, I prefer using the microwave over a double boiler/melting pot so I can use multiple microwave safe containers instead of all the scraping, cleaning and reheating that goes along with the one-pot-process. If you have tried and failed with the microwave before, please read on (and view the YouTube tutorial by TastyCakePops). I feel your frustration. I've lived it. I think I've come out on the other side though. 

1. Melt Coating for Terracotta Pots - So you have your dough pops ready for dipping... Grab a few squares of your white almond bark or if you are using candy melts, a couple handfuls and put into a microwave safe container. I've trial/error'd every type of container, mug, bowl, etc. you can think of and it's the small ZipLock containers that are perfect in size as well as conducting and distributing the heat from the microwave evenly so your coating doesn't burn when melting. Fill the container about halfway with candy melts or a couple squares of almond bark and microwave on half power for 30 seconds. Stir contents though not much melting has begun. Microwave in 30 second intervals while stirring in between until melting has taken over about half of the bark/melts. 

2. Thin Coating with Vegetable Shortening - DON'T BE CRAZY AND SKIP THIS STEP. If you forgot to get shortening, go to the grocery now and save yourself a couple hairs that you would be pulling out of your head should you proceed without it. Add shortening by the tablespoon, stirring then microwaving in 30 second intervals. You may need to add bark/melts to attain a consistency adequate for flawless coating and have enough in your container to be able to dip and engulf the cake ball. 

(Tasty Cake Pops on YouTube has the best video tutorial on heating candy melts for coating cake balls or cake pops. Her 7 part video series is below.)

3. Dye Coating - In between heating and thinning your cake pop coating you may need to add food color or icing dye if you are not using colored candy melts. To color white almond bark or candy melts, you want to add food dye the same way you add the shortening, in intervals and in between heatings, stirring until the desired result is achieved. 

1. Dip cake pops into warm coating Once your coating is warm and smooth, you can start dipping the cake pops. Cover the dough shape entirely with the coating, then let excess drip by holding the pop sideways or ball down. Tapping the stick on the side of the melting container while spinning it slowly helps remove excess coating so your coating finish is flawless in texture. 

2. Add Sugar Sheet Leaves - Position sugar sheet leaves on top of pots (or fruit) immediately after coating.

When you are done decorating your cake pop, put the pop stick into the foam board (I put them in at a slant so the dough doesn't get too heavy and start to slide down the stick.) and let them set. Again, I have my foam board already in the freezer so when I put each pop into it, the cold air helps them set quicker and avoids dripping or moving of the ball. I like to keep the pops on the foam board in the freezer for 20 mins or until outside is hard and then remove them and place them on a foiled cookie sheet or place in large Ziplocks. Store cool but do not keep in freezer for long periods or the coating will crack and the dough will harden.

Now that you have pots for your orange and lemon plants, you're ready to grow some fruit. So dip the end of sticks into some melted coating and add your dough balls to the end (doubling-up on some with the small dough balls). 

It may be a good idea to let your pops set a little while again in the freezer before coating the orange and lemon shapes.

Follow directions to melt and dye the coating for your cake pops (C.) then dip the fruit shapes into the coating (D.) and sprinkle if you'd like. Pour sprinkles over freshly dipped cake pops and freeze immediately.


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