In a large bowl, break up the madeira or chocolate sponge slices into fine crumbs. Add the zest (if using), then stir in enough buttercream icing to bind the mixture together. Add more icing if needed, but don’t let it get too soggy or sticky.
Shape the mixture into balls for eyeball pops or squares for monster pops and put on a tray. Push a lolly stick into each one. Chill for 1 hour or until solid. Keep the cake pops chilled until ready to decorate to ensure they stay firm.
To decorate the eyeballs, melt the pack of white chocolate cake covering in a bowl over a pan of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Push a Smartie into one side of the pop to make a dent, then remove.
Dip the cake pop in the chocolate, turning to cover, and allow the excess to drip off. Press a green Smartie in the dent and leave to set. Once set, carefully draw on the veins using red writing icing. Use black writing icing to draw a dot on each Smartie for the pupil.
To decorate the monsters, use the same method as for the eyeballs, melting the chocolate cake covering, but stir in the vegetable oil and a few drops each of blue and yellow food colouring into the melted chocolate, until green.
Once coated, dip the cake pops in chocolate sprinkles for hair and press on cut up pieces of dolly mixtures for eyes and ears, then leave to set. Once set, carefully draw on the mouth and pupils on the eyes using black writing icing.
Use an upturned colander as a stand for your cake pops while they dry.
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