Pedro Pony, Suzy Sheep, Candy Cat and Peppa Pig!
A peek at the side view!
I must admit that I was quite harried making so many different flavours and designs in one session as it's my first time doing so. I have always worked with one single batter and perhaps with another small portion of different coloured batter which can be safely overfolded. These 4 designs are not the only ones I made. I also made Garfield, My Melody, Miffy and Rilakkuma so you can imagine I was in a muddle after a while!
I made the following flavours for the various characters, with special notes for adaptation of recipe:
Peppa: Strawberry shell with strawberry swiss meringue buttercream (smbc). Check out My Melody macarons for the recipe. I used less pink gel food colouring for a lighter shade and more for the darker shade for the cheeks. I prepared the light and dark pink batters separately as I was making My Melody as well. You may just prepare a light pink batter, then portion out 2 tbs of batter to colour it dark pink for the cheeks. You may overfold this part.
Suzy: Plain shell with lemon smbc and lemon curd filling. Please refer to my panda macarons for the recipe. Some light pink batter from Peppa was used for the cheeks.
Candy: Caramel shell with Earl Grey salted caramel smbc and Earl Grey salted caramel filling. Recipe is the same as Garfield macarons. Portion out 2 tbs of batter and colour it dark orange for the cheeks.
Pedro: Chocolate shell with cookies n cream smbc. Recipe is adapted from Mickey and Minnie macarons. Omit the charcoal powder. Portion out 2 tbs of batter and add white gel food colouring to lighten up the shade of brown for the spots. If you don't have white colouring, you may add on the spots with royal icing after baking.
It takes quite a bit of careful planning to portion out the various batters and laying out the templates. I took care to print out a mirror image of the character for the bottom shells instead of the circles. I maxed out all my baking trays for this project. A 5-6 mm piping tip was used to pipe big features and a 3mm tip was used to pipe smaller features like cheeks, spots and ears. A toothpick was used to pull the batter where necessary (like Candy's ears and spots on Pedro).
Just to share some pictures of works-in-progress...
The masses with different flavours
Portioning out the Italian meringue by weight
Macaronage! Often the trickiest part of macaron making
Piping out Suzy
Freshly baked and paired (top and bottom shell)
Features freshly iced with royal icing!
Filling up the macs!
It took me a day to bake the shells, a day to ice the shells (including those made with extra batter not shown in this post) and half a day to fill and pack the macarons. I made all the fillings ahead of time which I kept in the freezer. Lots of work but it is satisfying to see the results of my labour :).
Thank God that these macs were well received in taste and looks!