This pumpkin project is my first attempt at making the cute little cupcake pops of Bakerella fame! I think her pops are soooo cute, but I have been a little intimidated to give them a try. Although my finished project could use a little help, they weren't as tricky as I thought they would be.
Here's how we made them:
First steps, bake one cake - and get a few cups of frosting (I normally make my own, but for this recipe I just used a tub of Cream Cheese frosting, as used by Bakerella).
Then, gather a few helpers who don't mind getting messy. Please remember to wash hands before and after this step.
Get your cake and frosting in a big bowl and mush it all together. I suppose you can use a spoon, but really, what fun is that?
Then you will need to get globs of it and roll them into little balls. I did this step twice, because the first balls I made were a little bumpy. So, I washed my hands, then went and re-rolled all the balls to have a tidier outcome. To add the "stem", I just broke part of a stick pretzel off, to make the desired size and stuck the pretzel in the pumpkin.
Now you just place the balls on wax paper and cover the tray with foil or plastic wrap, and put them in the fridge for a while - or the freezer if your impatient.
When they are nice and cold, then it is time to decorate. I melted a bunch of candy coating in the double boiler and added some orange color paste. First, I coated the bottom of the pumpkin with the candy coating, then I placed it on a fork and used a spoon to cover the rest of the pumpkin. This was the tricky part, and I still have a lot to learn about how to use the candy coating. One benefit of making these pumpkins - they can be lumpy and bumpy as pumpkins should be! While you are doing this, keep the tray in the fridge or freezer and just pull out a few at a time, they are so much easier to work with if they are REALLY FIRM!
After being in the fridge for a while again, I piped on some green royal frosting (which I made by mixing 2 cups powdered sugar, 3 Tbs. meringue powder, 1/4 cup water and 1/2 tsp. vanilla in my mixer for about 5 minutes - adding the green paste at the end).
And there you have some cute little pumpkin pops, take a plate to a friend or neighbor, or in our case, teachers for Parent/Teacher Conferences.
Verdict: Although a little lumpy - they taste good - we got the thumbs up all around!
A few things I would do differently:
1. Make them half the size I did - they are pretty rich and so a smaller version would be perfect! I made 25 and I am pretty sure 50 would have been just right.
2. Use more candy coating, so I could do more "dipping" - that might help them be smoother (although please comment on how to do this better if you have any experience - this was the hardest part for me - still trying to figure it out).
3. Don't run out of green coloring paste - so that you end up with a very soft pastel-like leaf and tendril for your pumpkin - these colors would be better BOLD!
Again, any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated!