Well, here it is - my very first tutorial ever! It took me wwwaaayyy longer to edit these photos than it did to actually make the cake pops! Please let me know if there any steps you don't understand and I will try to better my explanation or add in some extra steps. I am absolutely NO expert. This is just how I make them and what works for me. If you have any suggestions at all please let me know. Here goes...
1. Switch on your Kambrook Little Chefs Cake Pop Maker to preheat.
2. Prepare your cake pop batter as per the recipe in the Kambrook Little Chefs Cake Pop Maker manual. For ease of this tutorial I used their basic vanilla recipe which makes 24 cake pops. Please Note - you do need to follow the recipes included in the manual. Standard cake recipes won't rise in the cake pop maker).
This is what the Kambrook Little Chefs Cake Pop Maker looks like inside. (What's up with that green background? It's supposed to be aqua. Don't know what happened there!?!)
3. Add a heaped teaspoon of cake batter in to the base of each cake pop mould. PLEASE NOTE: This little machine gets VERY hot so please be careful when handling. Close the lid and cook for 7 minutes.
4. Open the lid and you'll see one dozen golden baked cake pops. You'll see I added a little too much cake batter to the top two cake pop moulds. Don't worry about this - simply ease the excess off with spoon when removing the cake pops or it peels off easily once cool.
5. Use a teaspoon to remove the cake pop balls and place in the cooling tray which is included with the cake pop maker. PLEASE REMEMBER - This little machine gets VERY hot so please be careful when handling.
6. Repeat steps 3-5 with the remaining cake pop batter until it is all used up. When the next batch of cake pops are ready to go in to the cooling tray transfer the first batch to a cooling rack.
7. Once you've finished baking your cake pops you can start to melt your Wilton Candy Melts. I melt them in the microwave for 30 second blasts, stirring in between each blast. (Our microwave is 1100 watts. You may need to adjust the time depending on your microwave wattage). You don't want the melts to boil or cook.
I find it best to melt the Candy Melts in a tall, narrow, microwave safe container. You need depth for dipping the cake pops. A wide container will mean that a lot of the melts are wasted at the bottom.
At this point I also suggest you gather any sprinkles etc than you might be using and keep them close at hand as you'll need to use them as soon as you coat each cake pop.
Melted but way too thick for coating cake pops.
Once melted, the Candy Melts can still often be WAY too thick. Wilton recommends adding vegetable shortening which is available from Indulge Fine Foods. Some recommend using Cremaltor which is available from the supermarket. I had neither on hand so I actually used Rice Bran Oil which worked a treat. I have been advised by a cake professional that while it worked well in winter, it may be unstable and not work in summer when temperatures are higher. I'm not sure about this but will experiment in summer and let you know. What ever you decide to use to thin the candy melts out with, they need to be hot with a smooth consistency that pours easily off the spoon you are stirring with.
8. Next grab your cake pop sticks (or paper straws as I am using), dunk the tip of the stick/straw in to the Candy Melts then insert straight in to the base of the cooled cake pops.
Repeat with the remaining cake pops. Leave for the candy melts to cool and dry.
9. Now this is the part that I have had the most difficulty with in the past. I'll share every tip I know to help you avoid the cake pop falling off the stick - which is so incredibly frustrating!
Firstly, make sure that the Candy Melts securing the sticks/straws in to the cake pops are sufficiently cool, dry and hard. Based on my experimenting, I would say 10 minutes is good.
When you satisfied they are ready, give your candy melts another 20-30 second blast in the microwave and then a good stir so they are nice and hot. As the candy melts cool down they thicken and start to harden so I usually find that I need to give them a 20-30 second blast in the microwave for every 2 or 3 cake pops I coat. They really need to be kept hot and smooth.
Take your cake pop and dunk straight down in to the candy melts.
Then start to gently rotate and remove the cake pop from the candy melts. This part is hard to explain but try not to rotate only the stick/straw as you may break the candy melt "glue" that is holding the stick/straw in to the cake pop. You need to try and turn the cake pop as a whole. There is nothing so frustrating as a cake pop that falls off in the candy melts and worse - when crumbs are spread through your candy melts. Maybe I should make a little video of this step?
The candy melts begin to set immediately so as soon as you've finished coating your cake pop you need to add your sprinkles now. Dunking the cake pops in to the sprinkles is not a good idea as smooshes the candy melts around too much. I found sprinkling them hand or using a shaker gives the best coverage.
The left cake pop was dunked in the sprinkles. The right cake pop was sprinkled on with a shaker. See the difference?
While the candy melts start to dry as soon as you coat the cake pops, the candy melts will remain soft and wet for around 10-15 minutes so make sure they aren't touching each other while they dry. If you are using cake pop sticks or the reusable sticks which come with your Kambrook Little Chefs Cake Pop Maker then stand the cake pops in the tray that comes with the machine. If you are using straws like me then find something tall they can stand in without touching one another.
And you're done. Hopefully you've stuck with me this far and understood my instructions. There are heaps of different ways to make and decorate cake pops - none of them wrong. This is just my technique for creating very basic cake pops. If you have any queries at all please message me and I'll see where I can help. And I'd love to see any photos of the cake pops you create too.
Don't forget to enter our Kambrook Little Chefs Cake Pop Maker Giveaway. Click the link for entry details.
Happy Cake Popping x