For what seems like years the question on so many lips has been: what’s going to be the new Cupcake?
Will it be Macaroons, they speculate? Whoopee Pies? Gourmet Eclairs?
Not that it really matters, but if I’m totally honest, I’m not sure that Cupcakes were ever that excellent anyway (a lot of the time that icing is way too sickly). Nevertheless, they are kind of fun – and, like it or lump it, they’ve made a lot of people lots of money.
So. What will happen when people get bored with over-coiffed Sponges?
Well, one potential candidate is the Cake Pop: a tasty ball of Cake crumbs covered in Chocolate or Icing and perched on the end of a stick.
The first one I tried was at Global Feast – homemade by MsMarmiteLover – and made a very nice intro indeed.
Since then I have seen them in lots of places – and sampled some more of them too. They’re not everywhere yet, like Cupcakes have been, but they seem to be on the up.
Until fairly recently, however, the ones that I’ve had have been reasonably samey: just a fairly plain Sponge with a colourful coating.
Thankfully, though, some folks are branching out. Like the guys at PopKakery, whose selection of flavours currently numbers ten.
The box they sent me contained four kinds from their range, with pretty good-looking exteriors to match: the MochaPop (Coffee Cake with Dark Chocolate); the Red Velvet (Chocolate Cake with dyed Sugar and White Chocolate); the Krumbles ‘n’ Kreme (Cookie Cake with a sweet Crumble) and the PopNoir (Dark Chocolate inside and out).
They were pretty darn tasty too, I can tell you.
Like Truffles, each filling was wonderfully moist, with a lovely Chocolatey crunch.
The MochaPop was particularly good, especially given I’m normally not keen on Coffee: whatever they mixed those Cake crumbs with was seriously moreish.
The Dark Chocolate Cake, meanwhile, was super rich – kind of eggy, but in a good way – while the patches of Cookie inside the Krumbles ‘n’ Kream weren’t quite as crunchy as you might expect (though the bits on the outside were more than enough compensation).
In the end, the only one that didn’t bowl me over was the Red Velvet – maybe because it was what I’d looked forward to most.
Sadly, it lacked that great zing of Cream Cheese, being more like your average Chocolate Cake – only jazzed up with a layer of red Sugar.
Still, on the whole, they were better than most Cakes, mainly because of that excellent Chocolate/Crumb ratio.
So. Could Cake Pops be the new Cupcakes?
Well, if you believe in things like Dessert trends, then perhaps.
But I don’t.
In this Pud-Hog’s humble opinion, a Cake is either tasty or it isn’t.
A better question would be: are Cake Pops more delicious than most Cupcakes?
And my answer? Yes. Yes, they are – especially those from PopKakery.
Though smaller they’re far less sickly, they taste great wrapped up in Chocolate, and they’re super moist all the way through.
The only downside is the thing that makes them stand out – quite literally, as it happens.
In short, I don’t like the sticks.
Plastic or wood they’re always inedible – and seem like a waste of resources. Why not sell the Cake Balls as Truffles, like Lucky’s? Why add any more to the landfills?
It’s not even like the insides cling on to the stick very well. If you try to eat them like lollies – like I have – you’re almost guaranteed to drop a few chunks on the floor.
A minor quibble? Maybe. But when they taste as good as those PopKakes did, you’ll want to eat every crumb.