Monday, April 4, 2011

Hello Kidney Cake Pops

Let me say right off I was hesitant to make and post these thinking they might be offensive or taken the wrong way. In the end, my sense of humor overrode my fears so here they are. 

Plus I think they turned out sort of cute - no?

A former boss of mine is preparing now for a kidney transplant. He is one of the funniest people I ever worked for. Mark Lipinski is a brilliant ex big time TV producer. 

He was the boss who promoted me from Associate Producer to full Producer back in the early 90's. 

Now he is a huge star in the quilting world. He does it all; hosts TV and radio shows, edit and writes entire magazines, designs his own line of fabrics and of course, creates breathtakingly beautiful quilts. 

If you have any interest in quilting, definitely hop on over to Pickle Road and check out his site. He makes it all fun and fabulous.

So back to the cake pops. Mark has been very open about his struggle with his kidney disease and recently posted this graphic on his facebook page:

I thought it was hilarious. 

I tried to track down the creator and  believe it was created by Wrong Tees. You can get your own Hello Kidney T Shirt HERE

When I saw Hello Kidney, after I stopped laughing, my thoughts turned to Bakerella and immediately cake pops came to mind. 

Hello Kidney cake pops? 

There is definitely something wrong with me.

Most of us Bakerella fans have been following her unfortunate relapse with her own transplanted kidney. This was especially sad after the highs of her recent success. Her fans have been cheering Angie on in her victory lap book signings for her best selling Cake Pops book. I saw her in person at Williams Sonoma in NYC in November. 

So I dedicate these cake pops to two extremely talented and inspirational people, Mark and Bakerella. All good wishes for them in their journeys to new healthy kidneys and my heartfelt wishes to them both for speedy recoveries.

These were pretty delish. Yellow cake with chocolate cherry coating.

Hello Kidney Cake Pops


For the coating:
  • 4 squares baker's white chocolate
  • 2 squares baker's milk chocolate
  • 3 squares baker's dark chocolate
  • 3/4 cup cherry chips
  • OR
  • 10 ounces white chocolate
  • Red and Brown candy coloring
For the cake pops:
  • Cake, any flavor. I used yellow and halved the recipe.
  • Frosting, any flavor. I used vanilla. About 2 cups. You can find Bakerella's basic cake pop recipe HERE.
  • lollipop sticks
  • Styrofoam or floral foam block.
For the decoration:
  • Fondant (store bought or homemade recipe follows)
  • Red, Brown Burgundy or black gel food coloring
  • Red Disco Dust
  • 1 tablespoon clear drinking alcohol (vodka)
  • Crumble the cake into a bowl and thoroughly mix it together with the frosting.
  • Place bowl in refrigerator for 1/2 hour.
  • Form into kidney shapes. 
  • Make sure you flatten the front lower part so you have a good surface to draw the face on. Place back in fridge.
  • Color the fondant. I used Wilton's red, brown, burgundy and black.
  • Roll out the fondant and form the bows.
  •  Dip a small paintbrush in the vodka and cover the fondant surface. Then dip the paintbrush in the disco dust and paint it on over the alcohol. Remember, a little of both the alcohol and the dust goes a long way.
  • Create the arteries by rolling thin little logs in each colors, cut into about 1 inch parts and smoosh one of all three colors at one end.
  • Melt chocolate, 30 seconds at a time on the microwave or over a double boiler. Add color if needed until it turns a a red brownish color.
  • Dip 3/4 inch of the lollypop sticks in the chocolate and insert into the bottom of the cake pops about half way. Place in freezer for about 10 minutes or until the chocolate has hardened.
  • With a chopstick or the end of a paintbrush make an indentation in the left side in the middle. 
  • Dip the cake pop in the chocolate, and gently shake off the excess.
  • Insert the fondant arteries into the hole. Use the chopstick or paintbrush to push them in further.
  • Insert cake pop into styrofoam and wait 5 minutes, them apply bow to top right side.
  • While the cake pops are drying, form eyes, nose and whiskers with black fondant. Gently apply them to cake pop once it has dried.
  • I first tried piping and then painting on the faces with royal icing. It turned into a mess so I gave up and went the fondant route. 
  • If your piping skills are sharp, you may want to do that. It will save you a lot of time.

For the Homemade Fondant

  • 1/2  bag (1/2 pound) marshmallows (minis melt easier but you can use regular sized ones as well.)
  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • 1 pound of powdered sugar
  • Crisco or shortening
  • plastic wrap or cling film
  • Gel or paste food coloring
  • Cover the inside of a heat safe bowl and a wooden spoon with Crisco or shortening.
  • Place marshmallows and water in the bowl.
  • Microwave the marshmallows for 30 seconds at a time stirring the mixture in between with the wooden spoon.
  • When the mixture is the consistency of Marshmallow Fluff, stir in 3/4 of the powdered sugar one cup at a time.
  • Cover your work surface with powdered sugar and cover your hands with Crisco or shortening.
  • Dump the fondant on the sugared surface and knead the rest of the sugar in.
  • Separate the fondant into different parts and color as desired by adding a few drops of gel colors at a time and kneading it in until the color is evenly distributed and you get the color you want. 
  • Wrap each piece in plastic wrap until you use it.
  • Wrap leftover fondant tightly in plastic cling film and store in a zip lock bag.
Hello Kidney!


  1. LOL! Well, I think this is a great tribute to anybody going through what they're going through...and they're pretty durn cute, too ;) You have more patience than I.

  2. These are awesome! There is so much truth to the whole "laughter is the best medicine" saying.

  3. You are just brilliant. They not only look fabulous but makes us realise just how lucky we are. Well done for taking such a humorous initiative!

  4. LOL you are hilarious! These are brilliant :D

  5. This is so macabre I love it! When I first glanced at this I was like "eh someone screwed up hello kitty". Then I saw hello "kidney" and I was like: genius.

  6. So cute! All the little cake pops (even saw cake poops last week) that are popping up everywhere are looking good. Nice of you to do this post.

  7. These are as sweet and adorable as the thoughts behind you making them.

  8. This are brilliant! I wish my Father was still alive, he would have enjoyed these so much. (He spent years on dialysis.)

    Lovely tribute and yes, I love your sense of humour :)

    Kind regards, Kitty

  9. These are definitely the cutest kidneys I have ever seen!

  10. love it . i am one of Marks pickles in Massachusetts cape cod . weze

  11. Wrong with you?! I think there's something very RIGHT with you. Fabulous!

  12. I like your quirky sense of humor and your kind heart.

  13. on dialysis myself and i will make these for my nephrologist's office. they will love it!

  14. I've just had my kidney transplant this past Wednesday and my living donor is a HUGE Hello Kitty Fan! I first saw the tees from a post a friend sent and I love the cake pops. Not sure how successful I will be baking them but will give it a try! Thanks for bringing some joy and laughter to what can be a very stressful and challenging process. I'm having a very good result so far and I'm hopeful to be coming home soon!

    Bless you and keep sharing your joyous spirit!

    Doug Cureton
    kre8ive@ aol . Com

  15. I just found this post. It's hilariously funny and so bittersweet as well...

  16. Love the play on words! You are too funny! Who knew a kidney could be so cute!?! Adds a little levity to a serious situation:)

  17. Funny, sweet (in all ways) -- just a terrific way to channel healing!

  18. I'm new to your site, and I have to say this is AWESOME! I bet your friend just loved this - it's so sweet, cute and creative and is quite the hoot! I love your work - everything I've seen on here so far is just incredibly creative and unique and I love it. As a fellow creative cake baker and fine artist I absolutely love and respect so many of the beautiful creations you've posted on here, especially considering how much work goes into making each and every thing and I'm sure to be inspired by you in the months to come! Keep up the amazing work and I look forward to seeing even more of your incredible work!

    1. Thank Melissa for your lovely words!

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