Adventures in Snack-Time…Or How NOT to be a baking Diva

Sooo…It’s back-to-school time for the clowns:

Which means Mom has to get back into super-mom mode. Even without the boys doing sports, we still have plenty of school-related functions to keep us busy, such as endless fundraisers, Cub Scout activities, birthday parties, class parties, room mother duties, PTA meetings and so forth. This usually means that I have ample opportunities to make a lot of snacks. Last year, on one particularly busy work night, I tried my hand at Bakerella’s cake pops (see www.bakerella.com). These were a disaster, mainly because I did not factor in the chill time, and the end result was the walk-of-shame to the Brookshire’s to purchase an emergency snack replacement. Sad, I know.

This weekend, I was determined to try again for our weekly Cub Scout meeting. As per Bakerella’s instructions, I cooked a red velvet cake, crumbled it in a bowl, and added in some cream cheese frosting. The result looked absolutely gross:

However, I was determined to succeed, despite already being overwhelmed trying to get a nice Sunday dinner made for my hungry family and friends. I rolled this concoction into balls:

Then added the sticks:

After chilling these for the APPROPRIATE time, I busted out the candy melts:

Which did not go as well as I had hoped. I tried melting these in a double boiler, instead of the microwave, and that may have been a mistake. They never did melt very evenly or smoothly, and I had to add an obscene amount of vegetable shortening to get the chocolate to a dipping consistency. I am sure that there was an easier fix for this, but at 8:00 on a Sunday night, I was not up for figuring it out. Luckily at this point, my friend J had arrived and helped me dip these annoying cake pops in the chocolate before I turned them into projectiles. The end result was worth it, however:

Because I had hungry cub scouts swarming me before I could even set the tray down. And yes, I do get a big fat “F” in the presentation department on this one, but you try cooking dinner, doing homework and rushing back out the door to a meeting in under 20 minutes. They are just lucky they made it to a platter at all, instead of remaining on the chocolate-splattered sheet pan.

Now, if I had only foreseen the reality of red velvet cake in the hands of 20 first-graders…..

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