It has been a busy March thus far with lots of candy and pastry R&D. Can you imagine anything more fun to do for a living? I can't!
My intern, Gabby, and I have been experimenting with cake pops. To be honest, I was skeptical at first, having never made or eaten a cake pop. The idea of taking a light, moist cake and making real buttercream, only to smash it all down into balls, goes against my pastry training. I must say I have been converted. Our cake pops are more like cake truffles. We created two varieties, both using the darkly decadent Valhrona cocoa chocolate cake we use for our Whimsy Pies. The first cake pop is chocolate cake mixed with Italian Meringue buttercream and dipped in our enrobing quality Valhrona chocolate. (No easy melting candy coating here!) The second is dark chocolate cake mixed with soft salty caramel and toasted pecans, dipped in Valhrona milk chocolate.
My interns Allison and Josh and I have been working on marshmallows. Allison perfected both raspberry and passionfruit varieties. They are light and fluffy in texture, with a hint of the real fruit purees we add during the final stage of whipping. Josh has been working on Sea Salt Caramel Marshmallows. It has proven a bit tricky to find a caramel we can swirl into marshmallow that doesn't either seize or simply blend into the marshmallow. Our latest batch is melt-in-your-mouth soft, with just enough sticky caramel. The perfect mate for a cup of steaming hot cocoa.
All of these goodies are available in our Chicago store for a limited time. Once we perfect the marshalllows we promise to make them available to on-line candy lovers as well.