ChrismasOrnamentCakePops

 

Joanne MacLennan of Merry Poppins is back on our blog today with a Christmas treat! Her brilliantly colored Ornament Cake Pops are a great addition to cookie baking this weekend.  A perfect project to make with kids of all ages, and a wonderful gift to bring to holiday hosts!

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I love decorating my Christmas Tree with the memories of the past.  Each ornament seems to carry with it an emotion locked inside for you to physically touch as you place it on the tree.  This is wondrous to me.  Now that I am a little crazed about small round edible balls, I thought it would be fun to create some ornaments for your table too!

Here’s what you’ll need:

• 1 Cake mix
Candy melts (red and white here)
Lollipop sticks
SweetWorks Sugar pearls, Sixlets, edible glitter, and nonpareils
• Wax paper
• Parchment paper or paper to catch falling glitter
• Flat plate or cookie sheet
• Microwaveable bowls for melting the candy melts
• Spoons
• Small plastic bag with the corner cut out to use as a tip for details, OR a decorating set with various tips
• Styrofoam block to stand sticks while waiting for them to set
• Bowls to catch falling sprinkles and candy

Ingredients

 

Here’s the how-to:
For the complete directions on how to make a cake pop up to the dipping stage, please refer to my last post on MyCandyCrafts.com , and complete up to the end of step 8.

Below is my basic ring cake pop.  I first made three rings of melts, and then sprinkled them with red nonpariels.  Let this set for a few minutes. Then make three more rings between the red ones and sprinkle with green nonpariels. Then, carefully dip the silver Sixlet into the melted chocolate and set on the top of your cake pop.

RedGreenPop
This cake pop was dipped, and immediately sprinkled with red edible glitter.  Make sure you sprinkle over a clean sheet of paper for this one.  Once you are done it is easy to bend the paper and let the glitter slide back into the container. Again, complete the cake pop with a silver sixlet on the top.

RedPop

I love snowflakes!

I first dipped my cake pop in red melts and let it set.  Then, after dumping a spoon of melted candy melts into a small plastic bag and snipping off the tip, I drew little lines crossing each other.  Three to be exact.  Like an X with one more line through it.  Then grab the glitter and sprinkle.  Any mistakes you thought you had will disappear in the sparkles.

I dipped the cake pop in red melts again and let it set.  Using my little plastic bag with melts in it, I drew a line from the top of the cake pop to the bottom, and came right back up a little but away from my first line.  Then I filled in the space with melts and quickly sprinkled with gold edible glitter.  Continue around the ball until it is complete.

Oh!  And don’t forget the silver Sixlet on the top!

SnowflakePop

This green striped cake pop was done the same way as the red and gold ball, but I dipped it in white melts, and then never filled in the spaces that were left between the lines I drew from the top to the bottom.  I love this one.

Top off with a silver Sixlet.

Green_CakePop_Ornament

All complete!  A colorful array of eye catching treats!

Time to clean up!  Being creative in my house means there is a mess at the end.  ;)

ChristmasOrnamentCakePop-Mix2

ChristmasOrnamentCakePops_Mix

 

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NRG_Drops

Do you ever lust for a jolt of energy, but don’t have the time to stop at Starbucks? Or, can’t face the day without a Diet Coke, but your refrigerator is empty? Say hello to your new best friend: NRG Shock Drops.

Hillside Candy (the makers of GoLightly and GoOrganic/GoNaturally candies) introduces berry-flavored NRG Shock Drops, which are portable, controllable, and shareable energy boosts. It’s energy to go, but on your terms. Have one drop for a quick pick-me-up or have a few drops for a marathon day ahead.

NRG drops are individually wrapped, so you can stash them in your purse, pocket, backpack, glove compartment, or desk. Like a good Boy Scout, you’ll be prepared for anything … even a drive across America. NRG Drops are also sugar-free, so you won’t fall victim to a sugar crash.

Try It, You’ll Like It!
For a limited time, NRG Shock Drops are available as a three-pack for $9.99 and it ships FREE! (Each 1.13-ounce pack includes four servings of berry-flavored NRG Shock Drops.) To purchase, click here.

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Radpack Gumballs

OK, get ready for five completely radical gumballs in one pack: Flaming Hot, Foaming, Colorful, Extremely Cool, and Super Sour.

Each of the five flavors in SweetWorks’ new Radpack Bubble Gumballs mix is over-the-top, and that’s an understatement.

Meet Ball of Fire, a gumball that gives habañero a run for its money; Mouth Mess, which oozes color and will instantly turn your tongue into a Picasso; Super Sour, a gumball guaranteed to make you wince (and possibly cry); Extreme Cool with ridiculously icy mint flavor; and Foaming Flavor, which should be avoided at all costs when wearing white.

If that doesn’t pique your interest, these extreme gumballs are also gluten-free, kosher-certified … and perfect for ambushing unsuspecting friends who are fully expecting a classic, cherry-flavored gumball. So evil.

We double-dog dare you to try a Radpack and give it a review at Candy.com. C’mon … do it!

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Sweetopia's Candylicious Pink and White Gingerbread House

It’s gingerbread house season and we’ve got tips from a master gingerbread house builder, Marian Poirer, founder of the tutorial-style baking blog, Sweetopia. She is also a guest speaker at this weekend’s Mixed Conference with Duff Goldman!

Marian takes gingerbread houses to new levels with her clever use of candy, foolproof recipes, and templates.

Her sweet pink gingerbread house (above) features pink rock candy sticks as the evergreen trees, pink Sixlets as the siding, and Necco Wafers and Shimmer Pink Bubble Gumballs as the rooftop. Simple ideas that you can easily build on at home.

Marian’s red and white gingerbread house (below) turns swirl pops into trees, and gumballs and Sixlets into Seuss-like shrubs.

Sweetopia's Candylicious Red and White Gingerbread House

 

We had a chance to talk with Marian about her gingerbread houses and gather a few tips. Here’s the abridged version …

Candy.com:  Your gingerbread houses are works of art. What got you interested in making them?

Marian Poirier - SweetopiaMarian: My fascination with making sweets began nine years ago, when a illness prevented me from engaging in physical fitness; what I had previously spent much of my free time doing. I needed to keep busy, and as gingerbread houses had always charmed me, I decided to try my hand at one. The first house I made wasn’t the prettiest, but I was hooked! The more I made them, the more I found there was to try. Thank goodness the illness only lasted about six months, and I’m grateful for it now, because it led me to find one of my favorite hobbies.

 

Candy.com:  What is your absolute favorite candy to use on a gingerbread house? (We love your use of pink rock candy sticks!)

Marian:  Candy canes first, and gumballs come a close second. Oh, and I do love the rock candy sticks, too! They have this pretty, kind of ‘candy gem’ look, and can easily be matched to any color theme.

 

Candy.com:  In your opinion, what’s the trickiest part to creating a gingerbread house?

Marian:  I would have to say putting the walls together and the roof on. As long as you’ve got a really good royal icing (nice and thick), that will do wonders in making the process much easier. Until I found the recipe I use now, I went through a few frustrating experiences.

 

Candy.com:  Do you have a rule of thumb for about how much candy to buy per small-sized and/or large-sized house?

Marian: It depends on the style I’m going for. If I’m making a house that I’d like to have a bit more of a realistic look, I’m a little more choosy and sparse with the candy. If I’m making a fun, whimsical type of gingerbread house, like the pink-themed one in this post, I pile on the candy! It’s always good to buy a little extra, as oftentimes I’m not sure how much I’ll need until I begin decorating. Plus, that way my husband and I can snack a bit, without being worried that there won’t be enough to finish the house! ;-)

Sweetopia's Traditional Gingerbread House

 

For more tips, check out Marian’s blog post Gingerbread House Ideas and video Making a Gingerbread House.

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