Delish featured in Nottingham Post recently and if you’ve missed the article, here it is…
IT is a scientifically proven fact that any food tastes better when it’s on a stick. Hot dogs, ice cream, fried candy bars, pretty much any kind of meat – run some wood through it and you’ve made it that much better.
And that formula works for cake as well.
The concept is simple. At first glance, the little baubles on sticks look like lollipops. Closer inspection reveals that these pops are made of cake and icing.
They’re the creations of Neli Ban, who sold them during the holiday season at the Nottingham Collective chalet at the winter market. She also sells the goods at wearedelish.com and at various other events around the city.
Neli has a few popular standby designs, but she makes cake pops to order. Some she designs with different patterns and colours; others become little characters. Neli’s made little cakey penguins, geishas, snowmen…
“You can do whatever you want with them,” she says.
Her biggest creation involves a well-known face.
“The most popular ones are Lego heads,” she says. “The little Lego man heads, the yellow ones. I thought it was because of kids, but it’s adults as well. Lego is ever-popular.”
Another design that’s turned a few heads in Nottingham is one she did recently – cake pops featuring the Forest logo.
In addition to different designs and colours, she can also make cake pops to different dietary requirements.
“I do a lot of gluten-free ones,” she says. “I can do dairy-free ones, but they are harder.”
The cakey treats’ versatility and uniqueness have given them cache with people planning big parties. Cake pops have become popular with weddings, and that can be fun for Neli as well. She enjoys meeting customers and creating something bespoke.
“If they’re local I’ll arrange to meet up with them,” Neli says.
“They’ll normally have a pretty good idea of what they’re doing for their wedding, a colour scheme or a theme.”
She’s booked to create cake pops for one couple who are getting married in Las Vegas and coming back for the reception.
They wanted a Vegas theme, so Neli’s doing them cake-pop playing cards.
“Those are the better ones, I think,” she says. “You get fed up with just making the round ones with sprinkles on.”
Several years ago, Neli didn’t even know how to make the round ones with sprinkles. About two-and-a-half years ago, she was online and discovered POP Bakery, a North London bakery that’s been on the pioneering cutting edge of cake pop technology. She was interested, but she couldn’t find any more information about how the little impaled spheres were actually made.
She left it a bit. And the free flow of cake pop-related information gathered pace.
“About a year ago I looked into it again, and there was now plenty of information on how to make them,” she says.
In the last year, Neli’s situation also changed. At the beginning of the summer, she was made redundant from her job in marketing. She had always enjoyed baking – now, she thought, why not try making it into something full-time? It’s a decision she hasn’t regretted. She now sells online and at events (she moved quite a few cake pops at the winter market). Her cake pops are also sold at Belle and Jerome bistros in Beeston and West Bridgford. She would like to have her own shop. But she reckons that would have to be in the city centre, and that gets expensive. So for now, Neli’s happy to craft her cakey creations to the specifications her customers want – every one a little, bespoke mound of dessert goodness.
On a stick.
Read the full article on This is Nottingham