I made the macarons a few days in advance before the cake...
You may refer to the banana macaron post for the basic recipe. The giant monkey and coconut tree macarons were filled with dark chocolate ganache. Baking large macaron shells require longer baking times with the temperature at 110-120°C after 20-25 minutes of baking to prevent browning of the shells.
Just to share some photos of the macaron making process...
Piping the large shells in stages
I decorated the shells with royal icing and edible marker.
Filling the shells with dark chocolate ganache and adding in long lollipop sticks
The original lychee rose sponge and pudding cake can be found here. I made some minor changes to the ratio of ingredients to include a bit more liquid in the cake batter. I used an adjustable cake ring instead of a springform pan to make a slightly larger cake. This cake has always gotten very good reviews as it is light and refreshing, perfect for eating after heavy birthday meals.
Lychee rose chiffon sponge
Ingredients (two 9"round pan):
4 egg yolks
15g caster sugar
65g canola/ vegetable oil
65g canned lychee puree (sieved to remove woody bits)
1/4 tsp rose water
1/4 tsp lychee flavouring
1 tsp vanilla extract
90g cake flour
A pinch of salt
6 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
60g caster sugar
1. Line the pans with baking paper. Set oven rack to second lowest position and preheat to 150°C. Place a tray of water at the base of the oven (optional).
2. Prepare egg yolk batter. Whisk egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale. Add oil and whisk until well combined. Add lychee puree, rose water, lychee flavouring and vanilla extract. Whisk until combined. Gradually sift in flour and salt and whisk until no trace of flour is seen.
3. Prepare meringue. In a clean metal bowl, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until firm peaks (just before stiff peaks), gradually adding sugar once the egg whites are foamy.
4. Gently but quickly fold the meringue into the egg yolk batter in three additions. Scoop the batter into the two prepared pans. Tap the pans on the table to release trapped air bubbles.
5. Bake at 150°C for 20 minutes or until skewer comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan.
I used an adjustable cake ring instead of a 9" springform pan this time so I increased the amount of pudding.
Lychee rose pudding
300g evaporated milk
500g canned lychee puree in syrup
2 tsp rose water
1/2 tsp lychee flavouring
100g caster sugar
1/4 tsp salt
5 tsp agar powder
Liquid green food colouring
Liquid yellow food colouring
96g custard powder
480g canned lychee syrup
1. Wrap the base of the cake ring with aluminum foil and place the assembly on a baking tray.
2. Combine ingredients in B) in a large jug or bowl and stir until custard powder dissolves.
3. Combine ingredients in A) in a saucepan and bring to boil, stirring continuously.
4. Stir B) again before pouring into A), stirring the contents in the saucepan continuously. Bring to boil again while stirring. Boil for a minute more.
1. Scoop some pudding into the base of the cake ring.
2. Place a sponge cake on top.
3. Scoop more pudding to cover the sponge, taking care to cover the sides as well.
4. Put the second sponge cake in the cake ring. Cover the sides of the sponge with pudding.
I tried to play around with slight change in shades of green by adding colouring along the way as I filled the cake ring but it doesn't show up very clearly :p.
The cake tastes better after a day or two of chilling in the fridge to let the flavours come together.
I baked green layer cake in 10x12" tray for grass deco on the cake. I used a daisy cookie cutter to cut out the cake and half it to create the grass.
In order to attach the banana macarons at the side of the cake, I carefully inserted a short length of toothpick into each banana.
This is the first time I am assembling a sponge and pudding cake with macaron deco this way so I learnt that the macarons must not come into direct contact with the pudding....during my short photography session! I quickly lined the sides of the pudding cake with bits of chiffon cake "grass" as a barrier between the macarons and the pudding, and dried the parts of the macaron shells that were wet with paper towel.
The macarons have to be packed separately from the sponge and pudding cake to prevent them from turning soggy. Assembly of the macaron deco has to take place before eating the cake at the party venue.
All packed! I made a spare set of monkey and coconut tree just in case.
Thank God despite the hiccups along the way, the cake and macarons were very well received!