The moon cake is the most popular among the many delectable foods eaten during the Mid-Autumn Festival. Although not very big, the moon cake has a long history.
Among the many delectable foods eaten during the festival, the moon cake is the most popular. Although not very big, the moon cake has a long history and Chinese people have traditionally eaten it during the Mid-Autumn Festival.
The round shape of moon cakes has come to symbolise reunion, and the desire for people to come together.
There are different varieties of moon cakes
- BY PLACE OF ORIGIN: Beijing-style, Cantonese-style, Suzhou-style, Taiwan-style, Yunnan-style, Hong Kong-style, etc;
- BY FLAVOUR: Sweet, savoury, salty-sweet, spicy-hot, etc;
- BY FILLING: Lotus seed paste, five-kernel, sweet bean paste, black sesame, ham, salted yolk, etc;
- BY PASTRY: pulp-crust, snow-crust, pastry crust, cream crust, etc.
Traditionally, moon cakes are made in molds made of hard wood. The patterns and lettering on the inside of the mold would be left on the surface of the moon cake, giving it a beautiful and propitious appearance. However, it’s not so easy to make moon cakes with molds at home. So we will show you a simple way to make sweet bean paste moon cakes without using molds in this edition of Handicraft Workshop. Let’s make moon cakes ourselves to celebrate the Mid- Autumn Festival!
1. Prepare the water-oiled dough and oil-mixed dough, keep them aside for about 30 minutes.
2. Cut the water-oiled dough and oil-mixed dough into small round pieces. (A) (B)
3. Put a piece of oil-mixed dough onto a piece of flattened water-oiled dough, fold the sides of the dough inwards to wrap up the oil-mixed dough and press tightly, ensuring the folds face upwards.
4. Press the dough flat and roll it into oval shape with a rolling pin.
5. Place the sweet bean paste onto the previously prepared dough and seal the paste inside by folding in the sides and rolling into a ball. (C)
6. Place the readymade dough parcels on a baking tray with the folds facing downwards. Flatten each one gently and brush the tops with beaten egg yolk. (D)
7. Place the baking tray onto the middle shelf of a preheated oven and bake at 200 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cake surface turns golden brown.
A) Oil-mixed dough
- Measure 100g of flour, and add 50g of cooking oil into the flour;
- Mix thoroughly into a dough.
B) Water-Oiled Dough
- Measure 150g of flour, and add 50g of cooking oil into the flour;
- Mix the cooking oil and flour together until uniform granules are formed;
- Add 60g of water;
- Knead the dough until it’s smooth and satiny.
C) Making sweet bean paste
- Wash and soak clean red beans in water for 2 hours. Put the beans into a pressure cooker, add enough water to immerse the beans, and cook for 20 minutes;
- Throw the water away and just keep the red beans;
- Heat the pan with some cooking oil and add sugar. When the sugar has melted, put the red beans in the pan, stir and mash the beans at the same time until a paste has formed;
- Cook the red bean paste until any excess water is absorbed by the beans.
D) Preparing the egg yolk
- Extract the yolk from the egg;
- Beat the yolk gently.
- More Handcraft Workshops in ConfuciusMag.
Published in Confucius Institute Magazine.
Number 28. Volume V. September 2013.
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