…or rum raisin’ the bar because man, these are so so good (really Amber – don’t sugar coat it, tell us how you really feel you modest modest baker you 😉 ).
Here’s the thing though, in the interest of each “ice cream” flavoured cake post being slightly different, I wanted to do a different form of cake for each week (to recap: week 1 was a layer cake, week 2 was cupcakes and last week were the ice cream cone cupcakes). So, for this week, as much as it pained me to do it, I opted to go the cake pop route (*shudder*)…at first anyway. Once I discovered that my cake pop prejudice has always been completely justified (both on the hipster snobbery front as well as the actual baking of them front), I opted to make half of these into the even more kowtowing-to-popular-culture format of the cake ball. I love cake balls (that’s what she said 😉 ). I’ve discovered that not only are they delicious and bite-sized balls of goodness that are reminiscent of the Candiana that is the timbit, they’re also a) incredibly easy to make and b) they actually demand that you “screw up” your cake making. You know what that means don’t you? If you ever make a cake or cupcakes in the future and they completely fall apart as you remove them from their baking vessel (you know, because you couldn’t stop yourself…err…your young child – yeah, young child that’s what happened here – from sticking their fingers into the still warm and delicious cake to taste test it, you can now just tell everyone that you did it on purpose since you’d been intending to make cake balls all along! Right? Right 😉 . How can I not get behind something that saves your vegan bacon like that? 😉 ).
My first concern with these was that they wouldn’t end up tasting rummy enough for me (or gin-rummy enough if you’re planning on taking these to a fun card shark party). Have you ever noticed how often that’s the case? Yeah, it’s rum raisin ice cream, or rum balls, or rum [fill in food item of choice], and then you take a bite and you think to yourself “I mean, it’s good and all that, but you have no business calling this rum anything since I would never have guessed that it’s supposed to contain that delicious holiday-making ingredient if you hadn’t told me up front. I don’t care if you say children might be eating these so you didn’t want to go to crazy. That’s no excuse. In fact, that’s almost a worse excuse. Because you know what happens then? The adults eating your baked goodery are all like “Delicious, but the real question is will it get me drunk? No? Hmmm…definitely not rummy enough 😉 ”. Then the kids are all like “These are mostly good, but there’s this weird terrible background taste that I don’t like, so I’ll just go ahead and eat my overly-saturated-with-red-food-dye sugar pops instead.” So, congratulations, you’ve disappointed both audiences now. For shame. For shame I say.
I’m incredibly happy to inform you however, that these most definitely did not disappoint on the rum front. And worry not, that’s not to say that they taste like you’re drinking a straight up shot of rum or anything, but it’s definitely noticeable (as it should be! Fifty percent of your dessert’s name is the word “rum”, it should be noticeable! Ok, calm down Amber. Sorry, sorry, rant over now, I promise. Between stupid cake pops and lack of rum flavour, I’ve clearly just lost my head a little. I apologize). I’ll calm myself down now with a relaxing shot of rum….or a few shots of rum cake balls…mmmmm…..
Yield: 3 dozen cake balls/pops
- 1 cup rum soaked raisins (soak raisins overnight or longer in rum)
- 1 1/2 cups cake/pastry flour (or all purpose is fine too)
- 1/2 cane sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup vegan butter, room temperature
- 2 egg replacer
- 2 tablespoons rum
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter
- 3/4-1 cup icing sugar
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 3 dozen cake pop sticks (if making cake pops – I just used the short lollipop sticks that you can get at the bulk or grocery store)
- Make rum raisin paste: Strain raisins and place a 1/2 cup into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth
- Preheat oven to 325F. Grease 1 9 inch round cake pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper. Grease the paper and dust with flour, knocking out excess flour (I highly recommend not skipping this step, it will make removing the cake from the pan afterwards a breeze).
- In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugars, baking powder and salt.
- On low speed of a hand mixer, slowly add in the vegan butter a few cubes (or blobs if you’re me) at a time, mixing until there are no huge chunks left.
- Instead of using water to “make” your egg replacer, substitute the water it usually calls for rum. Add egg replacer one at a time, blending between each addition.
- Add in the vanilla.
- Add the almond milk in a few additions, mixing between each addition.
- Stir in rum soaked raisins.
- Pour batter into pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan until cool enough to handle.
- Dump cake into a large bowl and break it up with your hand.
- In a separate small bowl, using a hand mixer, combine 1/4 cup of your rum raisin paste with tablespoon of butter and blend until combined. Slowly blend in icing sugar until a loose-ish frosting consistency is achieved.
- Mix all of the frosting into your cake, squishing it in with your hands.
- Taking about a tablespoons of cake dough, flatten it in your hand, and take a dollop of your remaining 1/4 cup of rum raisin paste and place in the centre of your dough. Wrap cake dough around the paste and form a ball. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Continue until all the cake has been used up.
- Place tray in the fridge or freezer while making the glaze.
- In a small bowl, sift 1 cup of icing sugar, slowly pour in rum and mix until a glaze (i.e. pourable) consistency is achieved.
- Remove cake balls/pops from the fridge/freezer.
- If making cake balls, dip balls in glaze and return to baking sheet. For cake pops, stick cake pop stick almost all the way through the ball before dipping in glaze.
- Chill in the fridge or freezer until glaze is set
- Store in the refrigerator.