Moon Cake

Moon Cake is a traditional chinese confectionery normally eaten during the mid-autumn festival. For this year the mid-autumn festival falls on October 6th. It is around this time of the year where the moon cakes start appearing in the chinese shops.

Traditional mooncakes are typically baked and consists of a thin tender skin enveloping a sweet and slightly oily filling. The moon cake can also contain single or multiple whole salted egg yolks in its center to symbolize the full moon. The saltiness of the yolk balances well with the sweet filling in the mooncake.

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Traditional mooncakes have an chinese character imprint on top for “longevity” and “harmony” as well as the name of the bakery and filling in the moon cake. The imprint on the mooncake above describes the filling which is Double Egg Yoke and White Lotus Paste.

Moon Cake is an expensive delicacy. It is because making them and their fillings is a very labour-intensive process. That is why most people do not make it home but chooses to buy them. Suanne found some good deal Moon Cakes in her recent grocery shopping trip to Costco. The box of four below costs about $11.89 which is much cheaper than the more famous brands which costs up to over $30 per box.

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There are many legends around the origin of Moon Cakes. The most popular one is the Moon Cake played a role in the overthrow of the Mongol rulers by the Chinese in the early 14th century. During those time, group gatherings were banned and this made it impossible to make plans for a rebellion against the Mongols. Since the Mongols did not eat Moon Cakes, a chinese leader came up with an idea to time the rebellion to coincide with the mid-autumn festival. So, he asked for permission to distribute thousands of Moon Cakes to the residents in the city to bless the longevity of the Mongol emperor.

Inside each cake, however, was inserted a piece of paper with the plans of the uprising. On the night of the Moon Festival, the rebels successfully attacked and overthrew the Mongolian government. What followed was the establishment of the Ming Dynasty which ruled for 300 years. Since then, the mid-autumn festival was celebrated with Moon Cakes on a National Level.

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Moon Cakes are very rich, heavy and dense. People don’t normally eat one whole piece but cut them into wedges of quarters or 1/8th. It has a high cholesterol content too — so, you will want to eat it in moderation.

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  1. I never actually like the egg yolk in the middle of the moon cakes, because of that whenever my mom cuts it she’ll always try to find a piece without any yolk, or with as little as possible.

    And I get my pieces in 1/8ths.

  2. Hi Angela, I love plain lotus paste mooncake too, it’s just that the deal is too good to resist. Generally, moon cake with egg yolk is more expensive than plain ones.

  3. The hub brought some of these back from China once. Sorry I haven’t been around, I haven’t been cooking much and have been ashamed to visit! (grin)

  4. Did you like the mooncakes, Rosa? I don’t fancy it but Suanne adores these stuff.

  5. We like the mooncakes that have the mochi wrapper and is kept frozen until ready to eat. Cantonese call it Bing Pei Yuet Beng. I know it’s not traditional but it tastes better than the standard mooncakes especially when they have different fillings.

    Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!

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