Intro: Poison Apple Pops
Witch, please! Channel your inner Paula Deen by dipping spice-laced apple cake with cream cheese frosting in MOLTEN SUGAR. Candying a cake pop is super easy and works surprisingly well, these are sure to tempt all the Snow Whites in your life into taking just one more bite...
Step 1: Cake Time!
You will need: 1 x stupidly delicious spiced apple cake.
Poaching your apples in rosemary and verjuice before adding them to the batter gives a super unique flavour profile to this seasonal bake.
2 cups peeled and chopped green apples
1 tablespoon rosemary in a baggy
1/2 cup verjuice
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup AP flour
1.5 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (make your own! 3 tbsp cinnamon + 2 tsp ground ginger + 2 tsp ground nutmeg + 1.5 tsp allspice + 1.5 tsp ground cloves = easy!)
1 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or any nut that takes your fancy)
1/2 cup raisins (or any shrivelled fruit, I like cranberries or muscat sultanas depending on the season)
Step 2: Bake It Off
- Pre-heat your oven to 350F (180C)
- Put your chopped apples in a saucepan with the verjuice and rosemary (please don't be an idiot like me and let your sprigs of rosemary roam free amongst the apples - tie them in a bouquet garni or a muslin cloth and you will save precious eating time!)
- Bring the verjuice to a gentle boil then simmer until the apples are just poached - 10 minutes tops should do it
- Beat the butter and sugar to pale and fluffy
- Add eggs one at a time and vanilla
- Sift the flour, salt, spices and baking powder together and add to the creamed butter mix
- Stir apples, nuts and fruit into your batter by hand
- Pour your batter into greased baking tin (8-10 inches) and bake for 35-40 minutes
Step 3: Women of New York, Frost Yourselves!
Take a moment to sample your fresh baked cake and regain your strength. Soon you'll be cake popping. Macklemore's Thriftshop is recommended listening for this next phase of cakedom.
You will now need 1 x cream cheese frosting! You cannot go past the Magnolia Bakery recipe with some slight adjustments - added lemon zest beautifully contrasts the sweetness of the cake
250g cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 cups of icing sugar
Zest of one lemon
Whip the cream cheese and butter (whip it real good!), add the vanilla, lemon, then gradually add the icing sugar until it's a nice spreading consistency. If you need another break, this can be refrigerated for up to 3 hours.
About a quarter of your cake with ~4 tablespoons of frosting will make the optimal cake pop consistency. This was vary with weather and how moist/dry your cake and frosting is, so adjust as needed until the mix will form nice sturdy spheres.
Dip your cake pop sticks in a little melted chocolate to help them stay put, then freeze your cake pops for at least 20 minutes - they need to be frozen at least on the outside for the candying process to work.
Step 4: The Scary Part
In a move previously unknown to science, we will now candy a cake pop. Dealing with molten sugar is serious business, please take care of your body parts and keep small children/animals out of the kitchen for this step.
In a saucepan goes:
3 cups caster sugar
1/4 cup liquid glucose
1 teaspoon of vinegar (apple cider or white is fine)
1/2 teaspoon natural red food colour
- Cook stirring over heat for 5 minutes to dissolve the sugar
- Increase the heat and bring to the boil without stirring until the toffee is forming thick, glossy bubbles
- We're aiming for "hard crack stage" in the candying process - you can test this either using a candy thermometer (~150C) or by dropping some of the toffee into cold water - it should set hard immediately and make cracking sounds as it hits the water
- As soon as it reaches hard crack stage take it off the heat and, working fast, dip your pops!
- The unused portion of your cake makes a lovely stand to hold your cake pops if you're in a pinch
Step 5: Decorate!
The candy on your pops will set super fast! Melt some white chocolate and get creative with gory drip effects.
I made some eyes and noses out of white chocolate coloured red (using powder or gel only) and embedded them in the chocolate to create the classic Snow White look.
Congratulate yourself on your hard work with a celebratory spiced poison apple pop, and sit back and watch the Snow Whites flock to your kitchen!