Honeybee Cakepops

This week I did a presentation in my Public Relations class on the Haagen Dazs loves Honeybees campaign. Part of the presentation had to be interactive, so I decided to give cakepops as a reward for answering my questions. The cake was honeycake (duh) and each pop was adorned with a sweet little honeybee made out of marzipan. So so good!!

This recipe was adapted from smittenkitchen.com, click here for a printer-friendly version

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder [see Update above]
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup honey
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 large eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup warm coffee or strong tea
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup rye or whiskey
1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds (optional)

Makes three loaves pan or one 9 by 13 inch sheet cake. Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously grease pan with non-stick cooking spray.

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.

2. Make a well in the center.

3. Add oil, honey, white sugar, brown sugars, eggs, vanilla, coffee, orange juice and whiskey.

4. Using a strong wire whisk or in an electric mixer on slow speed, stir together well to make a thick, well-blended batter, making sure that no ingredients are stuck to the bottom.

5. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Place cake pan on a baking sheet to ensure even cooking throughout the cake. (I didn’t do this and it turned out fine)

Bake until cake tests done,  loaf pans will be about 45 to 55 minutes. For sheet cakes, baking time is 40 to 45 minutes.

While the cake is baking, open your marzipan and get out some yellow food dye! Ok, food dye is gross, but if you have to use it, the Americolor gel is fantastic and you only need a tiny bit.

Die the marzipan by rolling it in your hands with a little bit of yellow dye until it is evenly spread.

Break off little pieces of marzipan and shape into a jelly bean-like oval. This will be the honeybee’s body.

melt black melting chocolates, or dye marzipan black, or make black royal icing in a small piping  bottle. Decorate the lil’ bee bodies and place two almond slices on each side of the bee for wings.

Then, as with any other cakepop recipe, cut off the edges of the sheet cake. Rip apart the cake into crumbles, and mix in 3/4 cup frosting to moisten the mix. Roll them into balls.

dip the sticks into melting chocolate and stick in the cakeballs

Enjoy! Save the Honeybees!

Up Next: Gingersnap Pumpkin Pie

Adios Bulldog! Mocha Cakeballs

Ok this is it, the third and final attempt at cake balls. Previously, my toughest critic (my sister) has said they were too dense or the chocolate coating was distractingly thick. I think we finally got it. The trick is using the right melting chocolate and not putting too much frosting in the cake mixture… only enough to make them stick together as balls.

The mocha cake recipe is from a great cookbook that I’ve had since high school. Don’t let the title fool you, the recipes can easily be used for cakes as well as cupcakes.

Ingredients-

Mocha Cake:

– 3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
– 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
– 1/2 cup Dutch processed cocoa
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 1 teaspoon baking soda
– 1 teaspoon baking powder
– 2 tablespoons butter, melted
– 2 tablespoons canola oil
– 2 eggs
– 2 egg whites
– 1 1/2 cups lowfat yogurt
– 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
– 3/4 cup granulated sugar
– 1 tablespoon espresso powder, dissolved in 1 tablespoon of hot water
– 2 ounces good-quality dark chocolate

Chocolate frosting:

– 2 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
– 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
– 6 tablespoons softened butter
– 4 tablespoons whole milk
– 1 tablespoon brewed dark coffee
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1 teaspoon coffee grounds
& Melting chocolate of your choice

After you’ve done the usual baking of the cake, COOL it completely and then rip it apart. Add 3/4 cup of frosting to the crumbs mixture and roll into balls. Start with that, but you can add more frosting if you like the cakeballs more dense. Refrigerate the balls for 3+ hours.

If you want to make small chocolate decorations for the cakeballs (debatable whether or not this is worth your time…mine all broke in the car) this is a good time to make them. A good cheat is to print out the image, to size, of what you want your decorations to look like. Place the image under parchment paper.

Melt some melting chocolate and put into a piping bag with a very thin tip. Wait about 45 seconds for the chocolate to cool down before starting to pipe. Pipe the image on the parchment paper and refrigerate the chocolate decorations. I attempted to do bulldogs but after the frustration of some very broken dogs, I accepted that they will be somewhat abstract.

Once the cake balls have been chilling for over 3 hours, melt your melting chocolate in a small bowl or double boiler. You can add food coloring at this point if you would like your white chocolate to be colored. Take out the small chocolate decorations. Use a fork to slowly dip into the melting chocolate and coat the entire ball. Place on parchment paper and quickly top with chocolate decoration. Place it very gently otherwise the warm melting chocolate/cold decorations will result in an ugly, broken decoration.

final product: the melting chocolate started to cool, so you can see the very left cakeballs got a more smooth chocolate coating whereas the ones on the right are messier. Tasted the same though, and the co-workers got a little bit of caffeine for the lovely morning!