Saturday 30 September 2023

Pokeball 3D Cookies with a Hidden Surprise

 Over the years many people have made edible Pokeballs out of chocolate and hid surprises inside. I have to confess I dislike working with chocolate for structures or construction because my home kitchen is on an average 29-30C, RH 65-80% all year round, with some days out of the range in either direction. This makes it almost impossible to temper chocolate and handle it for assembly. I only do dry work in the aircon room like drying piped macaron batter or packaging marshmallows.

I made the Pokeballs out of cookies instead!

The surprise inside is chocolate coated marzipan balls from Marks and Spencer

Putting marzipan balls in the cookie cavity

Because I didn't take the chocolate route, this was more time consuming to create as I needed to bake the cookies and coat them with royal icing. Thankfully, Julia Usher shared multiple detailed videos on how to create spherical/hemispherical iced cookie structures so I had a very good guide on how to make them. Do checkout her YouTube channel for the videos!

I used Julia's cookie recipe but omitted the spices and replaced it with a little cocoa powder. I only had the dark molasses on hand at home so the cookies appear darker. You can also use honey instead. As I only needed a small amount of dough, I reduced the portion by a few times. I used my default royal icing recipe with a little light corn syrup added to soften to texture a little.

Another thing I learnt in this project is making and using fondant from scratch. I thought long and hard about how to create the details of the Pokeball and came to the conclusion that fondant is still the best. Although I used homemade marzipan or modelling chocolate for details that are fondant-like in the past, I wanted something that is easier to handle (than modelling chocolate) in my hot and humid environment, and appear less grainy (than marzipan as almond flour grains may show a little in marzipan). I will still consider modelling chocolate and marzipan for future projects if they are appropriate because they taste good, just not for this project.

I chanced upon recipes by Veena Azmanov for homemade fondant which doesn't taste as bad as I thought! I have to stress that it has to be made from scratch and not from store bought marshmallows, for homemade fondant to taste good. I have avoided working with fondant because they don't taste good. Well I am proven wrong with homemade ones, especially when black cocoa powder is used for black😋! I used this recipe for white fondant and this recipe for black fondant. I made really small batches since I only needed a little fondant and won't be using it in the foreseeable future. 

Here's a reel for the process of making these cookies! Pardon the lack of coverage during most of the fondant parts as I didn't want to have to focus on the camera while working with the sticky mess that took me some time to get the hang of it 😆. It turned out I needed to knead in a lot more icing sugar/ cornstarch mix for it to be workable because of my hot and humid working conditions.

I managed to make a dozen of them!

It was a good learning experience throughout the whole process and my chocoholic elder kid happily ate all the cut Pokeballs (I cut a few of them for taking videos and taste testing) . One of them is going on top of a macaron carousel. Stay tuned for it!

with love,

Phay Shing

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