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Valentine's Day Cake Pops 

"Don't play with your food." What kid hasn't heard those words at the dinner table? This hands-on, holiday-themed dessert allows youngsters to have their cake and eat it, too, so to speak. When they're finished, they'll have a batch of tasty treats to hand out to friends or classmates on Valentine's Day. It may take a few tries to perfect the pops, but at least you get to eat your mistakes.

Looking for candy melts, styrofoam blocks and cellophane bags? Check your local craft store.

Materials

  • 1 fully cooled 9x13-inch cake: Use a box cake mix of your choice and follow package directions
  • 1 16-ounce can frosting
  • tray or cookie sheet
  • wax paper
  • chocolate chips or candy melts
  • 50 lollipop sticks
  • sprinkles (optional)
  • 2 or 3 styrofoam blocks
  • 50 small cellophane bags
  • ribbons or twist ties

Instructions

  1. Use your hands to finely crumble the cake into a large bowl.
  2. Stir in about a quarter of the can of frosting, adding more in small amounts as necessary to reach a thick, cookie-dough-like consistency. The cake should be moistened, but still slightly crumbly.
  3. Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls — it should make about 50 of them. Place them on a tray or cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Chill in the freezer for at least half an hour, until firm.
  4. In a deep, narrow, microwave-safe measuring cup or glass, melt the chocolate chips or candy melts in the microwave in 20-second increments until fully smooth.
  5. Dip the tip of a lollipop stick into the melted chocolate or candy coating and insert it straight into the center of one of the cake balls. Repeat until each ball has a stick. Return the tray to the freezer for another 15 minutes.
  6. Reheat the chocolate or candy melts if needed. Carefully dip each cake ball into the melted chocolate or candy coating, rotating slowly until fully covered. Remove and gently tap and twirl the lollipop stick against the edge of the cup to shake off excess coating.
  7. While the coating is still wet, decorate as desired with sprinkles.
  8. Insert the lollipop sticks into a styrofoam block to let the cake pops dry before eating. To package the pops to give away, tuck each individually in a cellophane bag, securing with a ribbon or twist tie.

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