The Mooncake festival falls on the 15th day of the 8th moon, of the Chinese Lunar Calendar every year. Moon gazing is not unique to Malaysia nor to just the Chinese. The Japanese also indulge in moon gazing in a festival known as the Tsukimi, but they enjoy eating rice dumplings rather than the mooncake. On the same day, Koreans celebrate Chuseok which is a harvest day celebration and they eat crescent shaped glutinous rice cakes known as Song-pyeon. In Vietnam on the same day, the Vietnamese celebrate Children’s festival where parents dote on their kids and make them mid-autumn cakes for tea. These delicious goodies are known as the Tet trung thu.
salted duck egg yolk – they make the most awesome, and most tasty egg yolk centers for the mooncake – far better than chicken egg
traditional mooncakes are my favourite
And so it goes.. the celebration of the Mooncake festival is not unique to just the Chinese and is celebrated across borders. The only difference is that in Kuala Lumpur, each year the mooncakes become more trendy with ever changing flavours, reflecting the current trends in KL. At Intercontinental KL , the selection of flavours are impressive. Apart from the traditional flavours, this year sees exciting concoctions such as the Durian Paste with Oats, Yam Paste with Single Egg Yolk, Coffee Paste with Charcoal Snow Skin, Dragon Fruit Paste with Cream Cheese, Almond Milk Cream with Bird’s Nest, Mini Green Pea Paste with Custard, Mini Green Tea Paste with Single Egg Yolk.
Also tantalizing new homemade flavours of Pandan and Pumpkin Paste with Macadamia, Red Bean Paste and Sunflower Seed, Japanese Spirulina Skin with Sweet Potato and Nuts and Mixed Almond Paste with Dried Chicken Ham. Oh, where does one start and where should one end..? The choices are just endless..
trendy, funky flavours are all the rage now.. snow skin mooncakes are best eaten refrigerated
Well apart from the intense and tasty flavours of Intercontinental’s mooncakes this year, the packaging is also something to shout about. This year’s collection that resembles designer handbags is known as the Mid Autumn Collection 2012, and it certainly is the epitome of fashion and style!
Now one of the cutest mooncake gift bags I have seen so far this year, are the ones right here. The mooncakes prepared by their culinary master Chef Lo Tian Sion are so pretty and delicious, you’d want too keep them all for yourselves. There are 12 signature and new flavours to choose from, so you will be spoilt for choice. Some must try flavours of the season include Durian Paste with Oats and Almond Milk Cream with Bird’s Nest.
Presented in the stylish InterContinental Kuala Lumpur Mooncake Bag, they are this season’s must have item! The Mid Autumn Collection 2012 bag is a black and red classic design which will go with any outfit.. but I don’t think the husbands will be doing the shopping.. just the girlfriends and wives! But men, have no fear- Intercontinental staff will obligingly place them in paper bags for you, if you deem it too un-macho to be spotted swinging a designer mooncake handbag!
And ladies, with only 1,000 on offer, you best grab them now. Available in cherry red, and black, these bags convert nicely into jewelry containers, once you’re done with the mooncakes. How practical right? And for those who want the ultimate in tres chi-chi bags, try the Couture Collection 2012, which has only 100 bags in existence. You can actually have the bags personalized and have your name embossed on them if you please.
The bags will have four individual flavours of White Lotus Paste with Single Egg Yolk, Pandan & Pumpkin Paste with Macadamia Nuts, White Lotus Paste with Nuts and Mixed Almond Paste with Dried Chicken Ham. And for corporate gifts, if you order 51 and above boxes, you will get a free customisation of Company Name or Logo printed on the boxes.
Here are some photos of the live demonstration by Chef Lo Tian Sion.. he made it look so effortless!
Chef Lo Tian Sion introduces us to the art of making mooncake
Apparently all dimsum Chefs are experts with their hands at fashioning dimsum and so they are naturally good at making mooncakes
Combine golden syrup, cooking oil, baking soda and alkaline water in a bowl and mix well
the mixture will thicken
Place plain flour in a mixing bowl,make a well in the centre. Add in the above mixture. Mix with a spatula to form a soft dough. Gently knead the dough till smooth (takes 1~2 mins).
Shape it into a smooth round dough. Wrap with cling wrap and leave in fridge to rest for at least 2 hours or over night.
Dust work surface with some flour. Give the dough a few light kneading to smooth it. Divide dough into 15g pieces. Shape each dough into a ball. Roll each dough over some flour.
Dust hand with flour and flatten each dough into a small disc (about 5cm in diameter).
Wrap it around the filling and shape it into a ball. (always dust hand with some flour to avoid the dough from sticking).
this cool contraption is the mould for the mooncake
Lightly dust the wrapped dough with some flour. Press in your mooncake dough, using a firm even pressure.
Make sure it fills the hole perfectly.
WIth a swift motion, give the mould a good knock, and that force will cause to mooncake to pop out.
Place mooncake on a baking tray line with parchment paper. Spray some water on the mooncakes. (Note: this helps to prevent the mooncake from cracking during baking.) Bake at preheated oven at 180degC for 10mins. Remove from oven and leave to cool for 15mins (do not skip this step).
Brush the top with some egg wash. Return to oven and continue to bake for another 15mins until golden brown (since all oven works differently, do check after 10mins, and subsequently every other 2 mins to make sure the mooncakes are not over browned).
Leave mooncake to cool completely and store in air tight containers. Wait for 2 ~ 3 days for the mooncakes skin to soften before serving.
It can’t get easier than that right? Ha.. i might even have a go at it myself..
Anyway, for more delicious mooncakes, check these out:
Toh Lee’s Homemade Baked Mooncakes:
White Lotus Paste with Single Egg Yolk RM 21.00 ++ per piece
White Lotus Paste with Double Egg RM 24.00 ++ per piece
White Lotus Paste with Nuts RM 21.00 ++ per piece
Pandan and Pumpkin Paste with Macadamia RM 24.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Red Bean Paste and Sunflower Seed RM 20.00 ++ per piece
Japanese Spirulina Skin with Sweet Potato and Nuts RM 25.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Mixed Almond Paste with Dried Chicken Ham RM 20.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Toh Lee’s Mini Snow Skin Mooncakes
Mini Green Pea Paste with Custard RM 16.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Mini Green Tea Paste with Single Egg Yolk RM 16.00 ++ per piece
Durian Paste with Oats RM 18.00 ++ per piece
Yam Paste with Single Egg Yolk RM 16.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Coffee Paste with Charcoal Snow Skin RM 18.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Dragon Fruit Paste with Cream Cheese RM 16.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Almond Milk Cream with Bird’s Nest RM 30.00 ++ per piece (NEW)
Corporate Collection 2012 (4 Homemade Mooncakes) RM 78 per box
White Lotus Paste with Single Egg Yolk
Pandan and Pumpkin Paste with Macadamia
White Lotus Paste with Nuts
Mixed Almond Paste with Dried Chicken Ham
Mooncakes will be on sale at InterContinental Kuala Lumpur 1 August until 30 September 2012.
For more information please call Toh Lee Chinese Restaurant at 603-2782 6128 or email the team at [email protected]