Ever had a party?
Ever had an outdoor party?
Ever had an outdoor party where clear skies boasted and bragged all day long…. Then, then… a single line of thunderstorm-downpour careened over the house where you are and unloaded God’s water-bottle??!!
[You look around and realize that no one else in the valley is getting rained on... But you.]
[I swear God has a goofy sense of humor sometimes...]
But, here’s where you run outside and dance in the rain.
Isn’t that what Life’s about?
I saw a quote once (I’m paraphrasing now), “Life’s not about waiting for clear skies. Life’s about learning to dance in the rain.”
True, isn’t it?
So, that’s what we did.
[Not that it didn't take some coaxing...]
As the downpour ensued, Chelsea, one of our hosts, grabbed her dining room chairs…
[My eyebrows were raised. Hmmmmmm???]
Chelsea pulled each and every one of her nice dining room chairs (except the one I was plunked on, one eyebrow still raised) outside. In the rain.
“It’s a little rain!! Get over it, people! And, sit!”
Profound words. Profoundly true, especially in everyday Life.
“Hello??!! Get moving!”
Chelsea… pointing at her beautiful chairs… set up in the rain… looking at each and every one of us.
And we all Smiled… Maybe because we weren’t quite sure if we wanted to get soaked, even if we knew the storm would last only a few minutes… Maybe because rain is something that just happens in Life. Maybe it was because we were a teeny-tiny bit frightened that Chelsea just might kick our butts if we didn’t go out there and enjoy the rain.
There are some things in Life that take a Friend to point out. Like not being afraid of, or huddling away from, the rain. Rain… It renews, refreshes, rejuvenates, heals… I had kinda forgotten that for a moment. Until yesterday. Pretty sweet lil’ pun on Life, too.
Life. It comes with a little rain. And Smiles. And laughter, even when you’re getting wet amid a thunderstorm.
That storm? It only lasts a minute.
The Smiles? The laughter? Those… Those last a Lifetime.
And, from my experience, these cake lolli’s (or cake pops) bring Smiles all the way around. You can buy some gorgeous ones in cake shoppes, but you can also pinch a penny or two, get your hands in the dough and have a great time in the kitchen… And, that, my friends (if you have the time) is priceless.
This recipe was my contribution to that wonderful BBQ with Friends…
**Stay strong to the timelines in this recipe… The chilling of the dough is absolutely critical to the finished (and successful) dessert. Do not, I repeat, do not, cut corners on the timeframes.
* 1 box white cake mix (store brands are just fine)
* 1 (16 oz) container prepared vanilla cake frosting
* 1 container snowflake sprinkles (larger sprinkles that aren’t so subject to their color running/bleeding)
* 6 oz of candy coating – Wilton’s is great, but hard to find in stores (you can order online at wilton.com)… No Wilton’s? No problem! Do this: * for each 1 cup white chocolate chips – add 1 Tbsp shortening, microwave for 30 seconds, stir, microwave at 15-second intervals and repeat heat/stir until the chocolate is completely melted. * for each 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips – add 1 1/2 Tbsp shortening, microwave for 30 seconds, stir, microwave at 15-second intervals and repeat heat/stir until the chocolate is completely melted.
Prepare the cake mix according to the directions on the box. When cake is baked, allow to cool completely, about 30 minutes. Crumble the cake into the bowl of your stand mixer and add the frosting. Mix with your dough hook for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until well-combined and very smooth. Add the snowflake sprinkles and mix completely. Cover dough with plastic wrap, and place bowl in the fridge for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Line a baking tray with wax paper. Use a melon baller as a scooper to form balls with the cake mixture. Balls should be larger than a big marble and smaller than a golf-ball (for best results). Roll the balls tightly. Place on wax paper. Insert a strong toothpick in each ball. Place the baking tray in the freezer for at least 1 hour, up to 3 hours.
Prepare the candy coating. If using Wilton’s place in a microwave-safe bowl and nuke for 15 second intervals, stirring and repeating until the mixture is smooth and melted. If using chocolate chips, mix/melt with shortening as directed above.
Remove the balls from the freezer. Using the toothpicks, dip each cake ball into melted candy coating. Swirl to evenly coat. Remove and gently roll or tap on their sides to remove excess coating. Blow on the candy coating to just-set before placing on anther wax paper-lined tray.
Once you have covered all the balls in candy coating (get creative here – you can sprinkle with chocolate drizzles, fun sprinkles, other candy decorations, etc.), place the tray in the refrigerator until the candy coating has set, about 1 to 2 hours.
You can leave the toothpicks in the cake balls (making them cake lolli’s or cake pops), or you can remove and set them in mini muffin wrappers for your guests.
Feel free to get creative with your cake mix and icing combos… Think of how the mix and icing will look when combined into the ball… Then think about your candy coating… You can really come up with some awesome combinations – the possibilities are endless.
Smiles, Friends… Life’s about dancing in the rain with sweet treats in hand.