Cake balls!

I only recently discovered cake balls, and quickly became obsessed with these baked goodies. I am a self-professed cupcake addict, and I love pretty much any dessert, so it was only fitting that I try out this new take on cake. You can find the recipe and instructions on Bakerella, the blog I found these on, and that’s a blog you should follow! Uunless of course you need to stay away from the temptation of tantalizing treats constantly on display. Her current post is about pillow cookies, which is another baked goody I just have to make soon! Quick take on pillow cookies: chocolate chip cookies with a brownie inside, um hello, sign me up!

I attempted to make the cake balls on Sunday evening. It’s super simple, you use a box cake mix and follow the directions to make a 13×9 inch cake in whatever flavor you desire. I’m sure you can make the cake and frosting from scratch, but it’s just more work, so I stuck with the easy route. I made a chocolate cake and a white cake which I added lemon zest and flavoring to. Once the cakes have cooled, you destroy them! I had a major problem crumbling up a perfectly good cake, but it was for the cake balls, so I relented.

Once the cakes have been crumbled up into large bowls, you add an entire can of frosting to them! I used chocolate and butter-cream for the chocolate and lemon cakes respectively. I also added more lemon zest to the lemon cake at this point, I wanted really lemony cake balls!

You then go to town mushing the frosting and cake together. You can use a spoon, or get down and dirty and do it with your hands. It was a little weird, but totally took me back to childhood, and memories of playing with my food. When the cake and frosting is combined, you make quarter sized balls and place them on a covered baking sheet. I used my amazing Pampered Chef medium-sized scoop, which made it super easy to keep uniform sized balls. I love using this scoop when I am baking! It creates the perfect sized and shaped cookies, and it allows me to fill my cupcake pans just right by using two scoops of batter to each cup. I will be hosting a Pampered Chef catalog party during July, so if you want to order any products, let me know!

After all of the cake balls are made, you chill them for a few hours, or stick them in the freezer to speed up the process. Melt chocolate and dip and cover each ball and set aside to harden. I found this to be the most tedious part of the whole process, and had really bad luck melting chocolate. I only dipped 16 balls, I had made over 40 balls total, and called it a night after burning my chocolate and getting crumbs everywhere. I used milk chocolate chips for the chocolate balls, and white chocolate chips for the lemon balls.You then chill the balls again, and after they have hardened, you get to enjoy them! I brought them out for dessert after my meatless Monday dinner, and it was a huge success because they were cool and refreshing on a hot evening. I will definitely be dipping the rest of the cake balls because they were just so yummy, I can put up with the task!

I am completely in love with cake balls, even with the tedious steps and burning the chocolate chips! Both flavors turned out superb. The chocolate was decadent, and the lemon refreshing. I will definitely be making these again, but hopefully not soon, my diet took enough hits as it is!

it’s not an easy road

Dear today, why do you have to be so hard? What with the carb temptations, the fast food smells wafting through the air, the incessant desire to eat? Please stop. Love, Adrian.

Today is a very difficult diet day. First of all, I sabotaged myself by making strawberry shortcake last night, and making more than the two servings Billy and I ate, so there were leftovers. I have been thinking of that yummy Bisquick biscuit +sugar recipe “shortcake” and sweet strawberries ALL FREAKING DAY!! Instead of a breakfast of strawberry shortcake, like the old me would have enjoyed, I made a sensible breakfast of 2 scrambled egg whites, an Orowheat whole wheat sandwich thin, half a Laughing Cow light original cheese wedge, and 2 ounces of thin sliced turkey breast. I should stop my carb intake at this point, because today is a “rest day” for me, and I haven’t planned on any workouts, so adding more carbs is sort of not allowed. However, life doesn’t realize, or care, for that matter, about my rest days and how many carbs I can eat, and I just so happened to have made plans to take my Grandma, or Gma, to Sweet Tomatoes for lunch. You would think Sweet Tomatoes would be the perfect diet friendly place to eat, and it can be, but did you know that Sweet Tomatoes makes the world’s best blueberry muffins? best. in. the. world. Probably my favorite thing to eat there, and one innocent looking, tasty little muffin is 140 calories, which will add up if you have more than one or eat it with your meal. Or covered in honey whipped butter. Mmmmm. I wasn’t tempted by the mac and cheese, the foccacia bread, the pizza or the soft serve, but those blueberry muffins had me salivating, wondering if I could grab one to go on my way out. I loaded my plate with a spinach salad, grabbed a cup of minestrone soup, and had myself one yummy little blueberry muffin, so I was “good”, but boy was it hard not to gobble up the whole tray.

Because my lunch lacked protein in a big way, I was “starving” by the time I picked up Kobe from school. Now, when I say starving, I just mean I had a major hankering to eat, and not my ever present protein bar. I snacked on grape tomatoes and cucumber in the car, and had a Knudsen light cottage cheese on the go cup when I got Kobe home, but nothing is satisfying me today, and I am back to imagining the gloriousness of the strawberry shortcake. This should tell you a little bit about my inner workings, and the thoughts that nag me daily. I haven’t craved much since I cut out carbs and sugar, but boy do I still want to eat them, which is a learned response I have embraced most of my life, and am trying to change now.

I thought I would share my struggles with you, so anyone who is also dieting and trying to live healthier can have some camaraderie when you are also dealing with temptations and struggles. It’s not easy to change your life, and it’s nice to know others’ aren’t perfect or having an easy time making the transition (Tiffany, you are SO the exception to this rule!) I think I will go make myself a chocolate peanut butter and banana protein shake so I can make it to a late dinner when Billy gets home. And then do squats and lunges till I collapse. Here is the recipe!

Chocolate, Peanut butter and Banana protein shake

  • 1 scoop chocolate flavored whey protein powder, I use trader Joe’s brand
  • 1 medium banana
  • 1 cup light chocolate soy milk, I use Silk brand
  • 1 tbsp light peanut butter, I used reduced fat Jiff
  • 6 ice cubes

Place all ingredients in a blender, blend till smooth, light and frothy. Enjoy! This shake is about 250 calories of yummy flavor, protein that helps build lean muscle, and potassium which satisfies a sweet tooth.