On TV Tonight
- 20:00 - Nigel Slater's 12 Tastes of Christmas - Nigel Slater's 12 Tastes of Christmas
- 21:00 - Nigel Slater's Simple Christmas - Nigel Slater's Simple Christmas
- 22:00 - The Hairy Bikers: Mums Know Best at Christmas - The Hairy Bikers: Mums Know Best at Christmas
- Prep time:
- 1 hr, plus 2.5 hours cooling time
- Cook time:
- 30 min
- Makes 20 cake pops (mixture can be frozen)
Have you tried cake pops yet? These cute little portions of chocolate dipped cake on a stick are a fun alternative to cake.
MethodPLEASE NOTE: You will need lollipop sticks and a polystyrene block with holes for standing your pops in to dry.
1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 170ºC and butter a 20 cm cake tin.
2. Cream the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl by beating with a spoon or hand mixer until pale and fluffy.
3. Mix in the egg, red food colouring, cocoa powder and vanilla extract.
4. Add the flour and buttermilk to the mixture a third at a time. Mix until just incorporated.
5. Add half a teaspoon of salt, bicarbonate of soda and white wine vinegar. Mix well.
6. Transfer the mixture to the buttered cake tin and bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
7. Let your cake cool in the tin.
8. Blitz the cooled cake into cake crumbs in a food processor or break it up by hand until there are no lumps.
9. For the cream cheese frosting: Sift the icing sugar through a sieve into a mixing bowl and beat in the cream cheese until smooth.
10. For the cake pops:In a food processor or mixing bowl, work 120g of the frosting into your cake crumbs until the mixture forms a dough (you can always add more if the mixture is too dry).
11. Roll the dough into 20 balls weighing around 30g each and place them on a plate. Roll fewer balls if you have opted to freeze some of the blitzed cake.
12. Cover the balls with cling film and chill them in the fridge for at least 2 hours until firm.
13. Put the candy melts or chocolate in a bowl and microwave for 30 seconds at a time until they are melted to make sure you don't over heat them. If using candy melts then stir in the sunflower oil until smooth , do not use the oil if using chocolate.
14. One at a time, dip each stick about 1 cm into the melted candy melts or chocolate and push the stick halfway into each cake ball.
15. Dip the cake ball all the way into the candy melts or chocolate until it reaches the stick, then tap off any excess.
16. Place some sprinkles into a small cup and dip the top of the pop into it or gently place a sugar flower on top.
17. Leave to dry in your polystyrene block for about 15 minutes.
18. Once dry, you can wrap your pops with lollipop-style cellophane bags or store in a tin. They last for up to one week if stored in a cool place.
For the red velvet cake
- 60 g unsalted butter, plus extra to butter the cake tin
- 150 g caster sugar
- 1 egg, large
- 20 ml food colouring, red
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 150 g plain flour
- 120 ml buttermilk
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 1/2 tsp white wine vinegar
For the cream cheese frosting
- 120 g icing sugar
- 60 g cream cheese
For the candy pops
- 400 g candy melts, available online or from specialist shops, alternatively use white chocolate or chocolate chips
- 2-3 tbsp sunflower oil, only required if using candy melts
Tips and suggestions
- The cake can be made the day before to break up the tasks. Cooling the cake properly also helps it combine with the frosting.