Beach ball truffles…

It’s summertime! Let’s have a beach party!…

beach ball truffles

 

There are palm tree cookies…

 

palm tree cookies

 

Beach umbrella cookies…

 

beach umbrella cookies

 

Soothing blue water, “sandy” sugar beaches and little sunglasses!…

 

Barbie sunglasses

 

Now, the only thing missing is a beach ball! How about chocolate beach ball truffles? 

 

beach ball truffles

 

These beach balls are not only cute, they melt in your mouth! (For how to make the beach umbrella  and palm tree cookies, please click here)

Here’s how to make the beach ball truffles…

To make the ball shape, you will need a round piece of candy. I chose to use little storebought white chocolate truffles…

 

white chocolate truffles

 

You can also use homemade truffles or even chocolate-covered cake balls if you wish.

You will also need:

A sheet of paper

Scissors

Thin foam square (this can be found at a craft store in the cake decorating aisle)…

 

thin foam square

 

Small rolling stick…

 

small rolling stick

 

Cornstarch

Cake decorator’s bag fitted with a small round tip, filled with frosting

3-1/2 inch round cookie cutter

Sharp knife

Decorator’s tip with a 1/4 inch hole…

 

#5 cake decorator's tip

 

You will also need a cool room to work in. Being as you are working with chocolate, it will want to soften from the warmth of your hands. Try to handle the truffles as little as possible.

To get started, first find the “polar opposites” on one of the balls. My little truffle balls had little markings on opposite sides…

 

white chocolate truffles

 

If you aren’t using a truffle that has markings, you will need to find the polar opposites by sticking a skewer into whatever ball-shaped piece of candy you have chosen.

To do this, make sure you have centered the skewer  inside the candy and have pieced it clear through to the other side…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Now carefully remove the skewer. You should now have markings for the polar opposites on each side of the ball…

 

beach ball candy truffles

 

Cut out a strip of paper about 3 inches long…

 

paper strips

 

Take the strip of paper and hold one of the ends on top of one of the markings on the truffle…

 

beach ball candy truffles

 

Now, carefully turn the truffle over while holding the paper in place and make a mark on the paper where the paper meets the mark on the other side…

 

beach ball candy

 

Remove the paper strip. You should now have something that resembles this…

 

paper strip

 

Cut off the remaining area beyond the mark on the paper. This has now become the guide for how long the stripes will be on your beach ball.

Tint the fondant into 4 different colors…

 

pastel fondant

 

Take one of the colors and break off a small amount of fondant. Roll it into a ball.

Place some cornstarch onto a thin square of foam. The thin square of foam will help you roll the fondant very thinly without much sticking.

Place the ball of fondant on the foam square and then dust the top with cornstarch.

Roll the fondant very thinly with a small rolling stick.

Remove the fondant from the foam square and place it on a hard smooth surface…

 

pink fondant

 

Take a sharp knife and cut  a straight line across the bottom portion of the fondant…

 

pink fondant

 

Place the paper strip on the fondant so that the bottom edge of the paper is lined up with the edge you just cut.

Make a couple of markings to show this length of the paper on the fondant…

 

pink fondant

 

Now, position a clean straight edge or pastry scraper to connect the dots and make a long cut…

 

pink fondant

 

What you are essentially doing is making a ribbon in the same width as the length of that paper strip.

Take the cookie cutter and place it over the fondant strip. See photo below…

 

pink fondant

 

Make a cut. Then take the cutter and line it up and make another cut on the other side…

 

pink fondant

 

You should now have a piece similar to the one below…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Take some frosting and make a frosting strip along the truffle’s side…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Position the fondant strip on the truffle so that the pointed tips of the fondant shape are lined up with the “polar opposite” markings on the truffle…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Smooth the fondant around the truffle. Repeat this process with the rest of your truffles using this color of fondant…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Roll the next color of fondant out very thinly, and cut out another strip like before.

Flip it over so the “better” side is facing down, then place a dab of frosting on one of the ends…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Place this end underneath the ball next to the  pink strip…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Place a stripe of frosting on the fondant strip and then bring it up and over the ball.

Place a dab of frosting at the top to secure it to the ball…

 

beach ball truffles

 

Using strips of this color of fondant, repeat this process on the rest of the beach balls.

Then add strips of the next color of fondant…

 

beach ball truffles

 

When you have completed the strips on the balls, roll out the final 4th color of fondant very thinly.

Remove it from the foam square and place it on a hard smooth surface.

Take the cake tip, and using the hole side, cut out a tiny circle…

 

beach ball candy

 

If the fondant circle won’t release from the tip’s hole, use a small ball tool to gently push it out.

Take your finger and slightly flatten the fondant circle to thin it, then place a dab of frosting in the center of the ball.

Place the fondant circle on top. You have now completed your first beach ball!

 

beach ball candy truffles

 

When you have completed your beach ball truffles, keep them in a cool place until you are ready to serve them.

For ways to create the beach umbrella cookies and palm tree cookies (and how to serve and securely get the trees to stand up in the sugar sand), please click here…

The following is how to create a “sandy” beach, if you want to create a little “beach scene”…

Items needed…

Shallow platter

Masking tape

1-inch thick sheet of foam

Hot glue gun

Brown sugar blue paper

 

Take a shallow platter…

 

shallow platter

 

And cut out a sheet of blue paper so that it will lay flat on the bottom of the platter…

 

blue paper

 

Remove the paper. Then take the sheet of foam and cut it in such a way as to create a sort of “cove” effect for your beach and then taper the edges down with a sharp knife…

 

blue paper water

 

Trim the paper in such a way that where the foam “cove” will be, there isn’t any paper (the foam areas should directly touch the platter)…

 

blue paper water

 

Remove the foam and paper from the platter and now completely cover the surface of the platter with masking tape…

 

platter

 

Place the trimmed blue paper on the platter…

 

platter

 

Then position the foam piece on the platter…

 

creating water for tablescape

 

You are going to be attaching the foam pieces to the platter with hot glue. I have a large hot glue gun but even if all the glue, that was currently hot, was available in the gun to squeeze out, it would never cover all of the area underneath the foam piece. So I cut my large foam piece into sections so that there would be a sufficient amount of hot glue available to firmly secure the smaller foam sections to the platter.

*When your guests are removing a palm tree from the sugar “sand”, the last thing you want to happen is to have one of your guest lifting up on a palm tree and taking the whole foam piece with it…

So, you may want to cut your foam piece into sections as well…

 

platter

 

After you have cut your foam piece into smaller sections, place a generous amount of hot glue on the platter…

 

platter

 

And press one of the foam sections onto the glue puddle…

 

platter

 

Let your glue gun heat up for another batch of hot glue. After a couple of minutes repeat the process above and secure the next portion of foam. Repeat until all of your foam pieces have been secured.

Sprinkle brown sugar all over and around the foam until you can no longer see the foam.

**The brown sugar is for effect only.  It is NOT meant to be eaten as it may have little bits of foam in it…

 

beach tablescape

 

And add your other beach-y yummy goodies…

 

beach tablescape

 

When your party is over, discard all brown sugar into the trash and carefully pry off the foam pieces, peel off the tape with the glue and your platter will be good as new!

For more fun curved cookie ideas – as well as how to make the little beach umbrella and palm tree cookies, check out my other tutorial site found at Floralcookiebouquets (dot) com

beach tablescape

Bing Balls

Valentine cherry cake pops Why not give your sweetie one of these little delights on a stick – “Bing Balls”!

They start out with a sweet cherry pink candy center and then you dip them twice into melted chocolate and then roll them in coarsely chopped cocktail peanuts! They are like a Bing Cherry Bar only on a stick! Seems like we are putting everything on a stick these days, why leave out the Bing Cherry Bar?  Yum Yum…   :)

And if you don’t  care for peanuts or are allergic, skip the nuts and go for the gusto! -  dip them three times into the chocolate! Seriously, is there anything as too much chocolate??

pink cake balls for Valentine's day Bing Balls

Melt in a medium-sized saucepan:

      1/4 c salted butter

Then add:

      1 cup granulated sugar

      1/3 cup evaporated milk ( NOT sweetened condensed milk)

      1/8 teas salt

      6 large marshmallows

Stir and bring to a boil. GENTLY boil for 5 minutes. Take off the heat and add:

      2 teas cherry extract

      1 cup red candy coating wafers

Stir occasionally until the wafers have completely melted. Pour the mixture onto a sheet of parchment paper to cool down. When the mixture has cooled and has started to “set up”,  start kneading it and begin forming it into little balls ( about 3/4 inch). Place the balls on a cookie sheet that has been covered with waxed or parchment paper. Place the balls into the refrigerator until they are firm.

Meanwhile, melt:

      1 Tablespoon red candy coating wafers

Dip a skewer into the melted wafers and then insert the skewer into one of the balls ( stick the skewer in only about halfway. Be careful not to push it clear through the ball) Place the skewered balls back into the refrigerator. Meanwhile, in a small heavy saucepan, melt over low heat:

      1 cup or so semi-sweet chocolate chips

      1/3 cup peanut butter

This amount may vary depending on how many times you are going to dip the balls. You can always melt more if needed…  Dip the skewered balls into the chocolate mixture so that the chocolate is covering not only the balls but a little of the skewer as well….

Stick the skewered dipped balls into a chunk of plasticwrap-covered styrofoam to firm up. Place them back into the refrigerator until chocolate has firmed up and then dip them again. Then roll them in:

      1 cup or so coarsely chopped cocktail peanuts

When the chocolate has firmed up, it is time to take a bite…or two… :) 

valentine candy bouquets

 

 

 

 

Cherry Walnut Popcorn

walnuts

Oh, this is soooooo good, almost too good, it’s hard to stop with just a few pieces! Cherry Walnut Popcorn is filled with toasted walnuts, dried cherries, a buttery cherry-flavored caramel…

cherry caramel

And chunks of red chocolate-covered dried cherries!…

chocolate covered dried cherriescherry popcornCherry Walnut Popcorn

Into a very large bowl put:

      6 cups air-popped popcorn

      1/2 c dried cherries, sliced into thin strips ( using a clean scissors works best)

      1 c toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped

Toss. Meanwhile, into a heavy medium-sized saucepan put:

       1/2 c butter

       1/2 c granulated sugar

       1/2 teas salt

       1/4 c light corn syrup

Gently boil for 5 minutes. Turn down heat to low and then add:

       1 teas cherry extract

Stir and add:

       1/2 teas baking soda

Stir well. Pour the mixture over the popcorn, cherries and walnuts. Mix just until combined. Then sprinkle over the top:

      1 Tablespoon powdered butter sprinkles ( optional, but it adds a little extra buttery salty flavor! :)  )

Mix, then gently stir in:

      1 c coarsely chopped red chocolate-covered dried cherries

Don’t overstir or the chocolate will completely melt off the cherries. Spread the popcorn out over a cookie sheet and let it completely cool and firm up.  Enjoy!