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Cheesecake Pops – My First Daring Bakers Challenge!


Ladies and Gentlemen, please welcome Mr. and Mrs. Cheezypop!

Today is a very special day in my blogging history! I just accomplished my first Daring Bakers Challenge! This month’s challenge is being hosted by two wonderful Daring Bakers: Deborah of Taste and Tell and Elle of Feeding My Enthusiasms. For the April challenge, they picked the recipe for Cheesecake Pops.


I had never made cheesecake before this challenge, so I was a little nervous. But luckily the process wasn’t as intimidating and difficult as I thought it would be. In fear of ruining something, I strictly followed the recipe (see below) and everything seemed to flow easily until I read “scoop the cheesecake into balls” part. I had a hard time doing so.

I used ice cream scoop and obviously, it was a bad idea. It simply didn’t work and soon I knew my cheesecake was going to turn into mashed potato if i didn’t stop. I welcome any suggestions from those of you who succeeded making the balls:) Anyway, I cut the cake into rectangulars. I had exactly 40 pops as the recipes read. I decided to try dipping the pops into raspberry jam and then coat them with melted chocolate. I tried the jam on a few pops then gave up, because the jam was more spreadable than dippable and was guaranteed to break my pops. I gave up on jam. I continued with plain chocolate coating, but hated my chocolate because it would harden so fast. See the imperfections on the first picture:)

Another challenge was how to fit these long sticks in my freezer? I had to rearrange the freezer to fit them, and boy, it was a lot of work:))

The fun part was decorating. I wanted something interesting. So I had this idea of marrying the two pops and inviting the rest to their wedding:)) This is how Mr. Cheezypop and Mrs. Cheezypop were born. I really don’t know what sort of creatures the Cheezypops were, but they were really cute and funny looking. I had some fresh raspberries at home that served as their noses. The broom had beautiful almond shaped eyes and the bride had almond shaped ears:)) She was wearing a white dress and a long white veil with coconut-flakes pattern:)) Their stylist was a little sloppy and they weren’t the neatest newlyweds in the world. And the photographer took the worst pictures of her career, too.

The guests were wearing black tuxedos and dresses. The ceremony was a lot of fun! The couple danced and sang, took pictures – they were simply happy. And they lived happily ever after. Not true. They lived happily…until… we, the gluttons, happily ate them. The End. Sad but sweet:) And we had a lot of dressed up wedding guests left over in the freezer to eat the following days. Sounds like a horror movie, doesn’t it?

But to be serious, I was a bit frustrated with the way my pops looked but the many compliments I received later for my crazy imagination lifted my spirits, so I am happy I tried the recipe!

If you want to make your own cheesecake pops, follow the recipe below. I thought my step by step illustrations could be helpful too, so I am posting them for you. Also, please check other wonderful Daring Bakers to read about their cheesecake pop adventures and to see the pictures of their masterpieces. Viva the Daring Bakers!

CHEESECAKE POPS
Makes 30 – 40 Pops

INGREDIENTS

5 8-oz. packages cream cheese at room temperature
2 cups sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
5 large eggs
2 egg yolks
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
¼ cup heavy cream
Boiling water as needed
Thirty to forty 8-inch lollipop sticks
1 pound chocolate, finely chopped – you can use all one kind or half and half of dark, milk, or white (Alternately, you can use 1 pound of flavored coatings, also known as summer coating, confectionary coating or wafer chocolate – candy supply stores carry colors, as well as the three kinds of chocolate.)
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening

(Note: White chocolate is harder to use this way, but not impossible)

Assorted decorations such as chopped nuts, colored jimmies, crushed peppermints, mini chocolate chips, sanding sugars, dragees) – Optional

METHOD

1. Position oven rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F. Set some water to boil.

2. In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese, sugar, flour, and salt until smooth. If using a mixer, mix on low speed. Add the whole eggs and the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well (but still at low speed) after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and cream.

3. Grease a 10-inch cake pan (not a springform pan), and pour the batter into the cake pan. Place the pan in a larger roasting pan. Fill the roasting pan with the boiling water until it reaches halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Bake until the cheesecake is firm and slightly golden on top, 35 to 45 minutes.

4. Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and cool to room temperature. Cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and refrigerate until very cold, at least 3 hours or up to overnight.

5. When the cheesecake is cold and very firm, scoop the cheesecake into 2-ounce balls and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Carefully insert a lollipop stick into each cheesecake ball. Freeze the cheesecake pops, uncovered, until very hard, at least 1 – 2 hours.

6. When the cheesecake pops are frozen and ready for dipping, prepare the chocolate. In the top of a double boiler, set over simmering water, or in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, heat half the chocolate and half the shortening, stirring often, until chocolate is melted and chocolate and shortening are combined. Stir until completely smooth. Do not heat the chocolate too much or your chocolate will lose it’s shine after it has dried. Save the rest of the chocolate and shortening for later dipping, or use another type of chocolate for variety. Alternately, you can microwave the same amount of chocolate coating pieces on high at 30 second intervals, stirring until smooth.

7. Quickly dip a frozen cheesecake pop in the melted chocolate, swirling quickly to coat it completely. Shake off any excess into the melted chocolate. If you like, you can now roll the pops quickly in optional decorations. You can also drizzle them with a contrasting color of melted chocolate (dark chocolate drizzled over milk chocolate or white chocolate over dark chocolate, etc.) Place the pop on a clean parchment paper-lined baking sheet to set. Repeat with remaining pops, melting more chocolate and shortening (or confectionary chocolate pieces) as needed.

8. Refrigerate the pops for up to 24 hours, until ready to serve.

_ Oh, Mr. Cheezypop, this is the happiest day of my life!!
– Ah, Mrs. Cheezypop, let it always be so!

Verdict: This is one fun recipe! A keeper. It was a hit in our family and among our guests! But I think there were too many pops. So, unless you are throwing a big party, make half of the recipe. That’s what I’ll do next time. Enjoy!

56 Comments
  1. Bravo! You did a fabulous job on your first go. As for the rolling I just ended up using my hands-no equipment was needed and I had the same problem with making space in the freezer lol ;) they look great!

  2. Farida, Your bride and groom looked so happy on their wedding day! Great job! Also I have to agree abot 2 things you said, getting them into the freezer! Fortunately I have an extra frig, but I still had to do alot of arranging, and thank goodness I was having a party, otherwise I wouldn’t know what to do with all of them.

  3. Fantastic job. They are cute and your shape molded great. Edges so clean. No room in my freezer also.

  4. Farida, those are adorable! Great job!

  5. Very differently decorated….innovative I must say..crazy imagination :D

    Mr and Mrs..look nice :)

  6. The happy couple look so elegant together! I love how you had sooo much fun with this challenge. I was in total survival mode this week & just by dumb luck I happened to made my pops before the post date…. Farida, I’ve said this before, but you are an artist!

    xoxox Amy

  7. This was your first Daring Bakers challeneg too! I love the raspberyy-chocolate combo, it’s a classic.

  8. What a happy (and tasty) couple! Congrats on your first DB challenge! I like the clean squares you got…I did balls, but ended up just digging in with my (clean) hands to do so. It was so creamy that perfect spheres were a bit tricky.

    I also had to clean out my freezer to make room! –Amy

  9. your pops are adorable! Welcome to the daring bakers

  10. Great first challenge! I am so happy to have met the Cheezypops!

  11. You’re SOOO funny! I love how the almonds look like horned rimmed glasses. Awesome!

    It was my second challenge too!

  12. Welcome to DB Farida!
    I love Mr. & Mrs. Cheezypop, they look like they’re really talking in that last photo :)
    Great job!

  13. Nice job on the pops. I love the fact that you showed detailed pics on how to assemble them. Very cute putting faces on the pops. Very nice!

  14. That is just the cutest photo ever! I love it :) Wonderful job on your cheesecake pops. Congrats on your first challenge, and a resounding success at that!

  15. This recipe is definitely a keeper! I love your photos! Great job!

  16. well done on your first challenge. Your cheesecake pops bring a broad smile to my face, thanks for making my day.

  17. Welcome to the Daring Bakers! What a fun imagination you have to dream up these newlywed characters! Too fun! Glad these were enjoyed by your family & friends!

  18. Great creativity! Love it!

  19. Oh so cute! Welcome to the DB’ers!

  20. Bravo! They are so cute! You did a great job!

  21. I love how much personality you were able to give cheesecake on a stick – great work!

  22. I love it! Those are so cute!

  23. this was my first challenge too. I LOVE the faces on yours–the cutest I have seen of the cheesy pops I have seen so far.

  24. Ahaha, how cute! I love it!

  25. Those are so cute! I really appreciate the fact that you left it in squares.

  26. Congrats on completing your first DB challenge, I think the rectangular shape looks great!
    I rolled mine into balls but it was a very messy process and if I were to do it again, I would just cut out rectangles.

  27. What a fab first challenge Farida! love Mr & Mrs Cheesypops…what a tale!! ha ha…great fun! Welcome to DB’s!!! xoxoxo

  28. So cute, what a great job!

  29. I love mr. and mrs. cheezypops! they’re so cute!!

  30. Congratulations on your first challenge! You did a great job! Those pops look very pretty!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  31. Aww … those pops look like they’re have a conversation :)

    Congratulations on a fabulous first challenge!

  32. Farida they look excellent. A marvellous job for your first daring bakers challenge. Well done :D

  33. Congratulations on your first challenge :D You did a great job on your pops :D

    Rosie x

  34. Very creative! Nice to have you with the DBs.

  35. Welcome to the Daring Bakers! I can’t wait to see how you manage to top Mr. and Mrs. Cheezypop. Hilarious (and I love the square shaped ones).

  36. Farida, welcome aboard…your pops look really cute :-)

  37. I just scooped my cheesecake out with a spoon and rolled it with wet hands. They were lumpy, but delicious.

    I also attempted using fruit preserves. Easier said than done!

    I like the characters you invented – great job with the challenge!

    Welcome to Daring Bakers!

  38. Congrats on completing your first DB challenge! You sure were daring and wasn’t it simply addictive?

  39. How cute! Nice first challenge!

  40. Oh my dear Farida, those have to be the most adorable (not to mention, cheesiest :-)) wedding couple I have ever seen!

    And it looks like you had way too much fun with your first DBs challenge. So much so, that I’m thinking of joining you on the next one … maybe I oughta take the time to become a member first.

    Btw, I had to smile and say: “I do,” when I noticed your recipe called for 1 pound of chocolate.

    Cheesecake and Chocolate, a match made in Heaven.

  41. lovely cheescake pops. nice instructions. Mr. Mrs. Pop look beautiful.

  42. Well done Farida, they look so happy together!
    :-)

  43. oh how adorable! may mr and mrs cheezypop live happily ever after! x

  44. Feride’cigim,
    bunlara gercekten bayildim:-))Cok seker olmuslar.Cocuk dogumgunleri icin super bir fikir.Hem cocuklara peynir yedirmenin en guzel yolu sanirim.Benimki sadece cheesecake yaptigim zaman peynir yiyor cunku.Ellerine saglik canim.Sevgiler:-)))

  45. I think your pops look great!! Wonderful job on your first challenge, and welcome to the Daring Bakers!

  46. How adorable. You are a creative cook.

  47. Great looking pops! I like the faces. I just used a spoon to scoop the cheesecake and formed it into balls in my hands like I would do when forming meatballs.

  48. These are adorable. My daughter thinks that Mrs. Cheezypop actually looks little like a puppy.

    Natalie @ Gluten a Go Go

  49. Thank you to all of you for your lovely comments! I am glad you liked my crazy creatures:)) I truly enjoyed the challenge and looking forward to the next one!

    All of you who are new to my blog – welcome and please visit again! It’s great to get to know all of you!

  50. So cute – love their little faces!

  51. Hi farida! Thanks for stopping by my blog and all your kind words. Much appreciated!
    I love your cheesecake pops! How original! Congrats on your first DB challenge :)

  52. Farida..the cheesecake pops look gorgeous..You rock!
    love ur idea of making them into two cute faces..

  53. Farida these are soooo great! Sorry it took me so long to comment I have tried to subscribe to your blog but I don’t think it is taking my email… This was to be my first daring bakers challenge too but I had to back out as I had too many things going on.

    I love the faces.. Great job!

  54. Wow! Mr. Pop has great eyes! :) These are just delightful, Farida.

  55. i spent some time into your blog.
    Funny, clever, delicious.
    My compliment.

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