Monday, September 28, 2015

The Mid-Autumn Festival

When I first moved to Hong Kong, I used to call this festival the Moon Cake Festival.  It's the time of year when we get loads of moon cakes from all our family and friends.  It's also the time when we, in turn give moon cakes out to family and friends.  It's like the vicious cycle of moon cake giving.  It's a great "giving" type of tradition, though…but I'm not that much of a traditional moon cake fan.  

However, a friend helped me to get some moon cakes which she said were one of the most delicious in all of Hong Kong:  The Peninsula's custard-filled moon cakes.

I gave these to my in-laws and they shared them with their family.  Before I handed them over, I thought I'd share some photos of what you get when you buy a box of moon cakes…especially the non-traditional ones.

By the way, the traditional moon cakes are lotus paste filled.  They also have at least one salty duck egg yolk in the center.  These moon cakes are quite heavy for me, but they are a treat when you start the Mid-Autumn Festival off with a little piece.  These moon cakes are mostly double the sized of the more modern moon cakes, come in a box of four, and are usually shared with an entire family.

Some of the newer moon cakes, like the iced (snowy) style of moon cakes are more bite-sized and individually packaged.

The Peninsula's moon cakes came in a beautiful chocolate colored box. When we opened the box, there seems to be four custard moon cakes in there.  In actuality, I only learned about this after the fact, you can remove the top layer and there are four more moon cakes below.

In total, for around $280 HKD, you can get 8 lovely little custard moon cakes.  I also got these pre-ordered through my friend, which was the best thing that I could ever had asked for.  Moon cake season is always so busy.  So, the hotels that make specialty moon cakes often have a limited number and when they are sold out…they are sold out.

My in-laws gave us one of the moon cakes, which I was quite thankful for because I wouldn't have really known how amazing they were in comparison to the traditional ones!

I really like how these are quite individualized.  It liked how this morsel was still able to be shared between my husband and myself.  It also loved how it was still as rich with loveliness as the first traditional moon cake I had this year.

TIP:  When I was chatting with my friend, she suggested popping these custard-filled moon cakes into the toaster oven for a few seconds.  Then the custard will get a bit melty and runny.  The goal is to have a beautifully warm, beautifully buttery, and beautifully oozing custardy moon cake to bite into.

I will try that next year!

***Photos of Yuen Long Park from last night's Mid-Autumn Festival Celebrations!***