Cake Ball Secrets

Cake balls are one of my favorite desserts. Ever since I sampled them at a party a few years ago, I’ve been on a quest for the perfect recipe and the best way to make them. Mine usually taste delicious but their presentation leaves something to be desired. Below are what I wish my cake balls looked like. These were made by Luke’s sister Katy, who is basically a professional baker, for her son Ove’s birthday.

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I decided to give them another try for Mother’s Day, and I’m happy to say that I found my cake ball sweet spot: I finally worked out all of the kinks. Here are a few tips:

– Bake them in stages. This time, I made them over the course of two days, I baked the cake, mixed the frosting in and put them in the fridge to chill on Saturday, and on Sunday I dipped and decorated them.

– Add a teaspoon of Crisco to the melting chocolate. This makes the consistency much more manageable.

– Use kebab skewers to dip, gently push on to wax paper, and drizzle chocolate over the hole left by the skewer.

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Above are some of mine from this weekend! They’re still a work in progress, but look much better in my opinion.

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5 Weekend Highlights

Luke’s mom has been in town visiting us, and we’ve had a great time taking her to our favorite local restaurants and showing her around. On Saturday night I cooked this risotto recipe for the two of them. This is one of the only times I’ve cooked for someone other than Luke and me, so it was fun to get another person’s perspective.

I bought Easter egg colored candles for the candle holder to replace the usual red ones. Loving the look of our place decorated for Easter.

My parents hosted a brunch for my brother’s birthday on Sunday. My mom cooked an unbelievable amount of food and it was delicious. This was his cake.

The weather was absolutely beautiful this weekend, which led to the last two highlights. One was the nice walk I went on with my mom and Luke’s mom along the Highline Canal. The other was sitting on our front patio with cocktails on Friday afternoon.

Our Chrismas

This Christmas will be the 5th that Luke and I are together for… or I suppose I should say, in a relationship for. You see, in 5 years, we have never spent Christmas Day together. People have always thought this was kind of weird, and maybe it is, but to me it’s a testament to how dedicated we each are to our own families… and what we will eventually bring together to make our family someday. We both come from families with very time-honored traditions. Neither of us grew up going to Cabo one year, staying home the next, visiting family in Chicago another, we always had Christmas at home with our entire families, doing the same things each year. So, neither of us feels quite ready to sacrifice that special time, yet.

To make up for being apart for the big holiday, which is difficult, though we both know we are where we should be, we have a tradition of having our own Christmas before we part. And tonight, we are celebrating it before Luke flies home to California tomorrow. I make a big, fancy dinner, we open our gifts, and then eat dessert while watching a Christmas movie. It’s become something very special to us.

Tonight I will be making pork tenderloin in a pear cream sauce, risotto and a caesar salad. Depending on how they turn out, I will be sure to share the recipe. Also, if you know of any good cocktails requiring peach schnapps, let me know. I had to buy a whole bottle (isn’t it pretty?) and will only use a little bit tonight.

Lost & Found

About two years ago I made a recipe that I found in Bristol Farm’s¬†free magazine that they give out at the checkout: raspberry macaroon bars. It was probably the most intense dessert I’ve ever made. It called for a food processor, which I don’t have, so I used the ‘mix’ setting on my blender. It took me about 2.5 hours to make the bars, but the recipe made enough to cover a large cookie sheet, so I froze most of them and Luke and I had them for dessert for a few weeks.

Unfortunately, I somehow managed to lose the recipe and the Bristol Farm’s magazine. Despite searching on their website and visiting the store to see if they had an old copy, I couldn’t find the recipe anywhere. Luke mentioned them again earlier this week, and I decided to spend sometime searching on the internet… and I found a recipe that sounds the exact same as the one I used before. I’m excited to spend an afternoon making these!