Discussion » Beijing Life » Food matters - mooncakes

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)
    叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹) wrote:

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    [From wiki] Today is the seventh day of the seventh month on the Chinese calendar (i.e. the lunar calendar),  hence the name "Qixi" festival, also known as Magpie Festival. Young girls traditionally demonstrate their domestic arts, especially melon carving, on this day and make wishes for a good husband. It is also known by the following names:

     

    • The Festival to Plead for Skills (乞巧節; qǐ qiǎo jié)
    • The Seventh Sister's Birthday (七姊誕; qī jiě dàn)
    • The Night of Skills (巧夕; qiǎo xī)
  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

    ...

    However, as the title goes, we are here to talk about mooncakes, so let's get on with it, shall we?

    I am sure most people reading this thread would have had one piece of mooncake in his/her natural life, however, most people might not know (or remember) the history of "moonchakes". Someone actually asked me about this, hence this thread.

    Mid-Autumn Festival

    The festival is intricately linked to the legends of "Chang E", the mythical Moon Goddess of Immortality. According to “Li-Ji”, an ancient Chinese book recording customs and ceremonies, the Chinese Emperor should offer sacrifices to the sun in spring and the moon in autumn. The 15th day of the 8th lunar month is the day called “Mid-Autumn”. The night on August 15 is also called “Night of the Moon”. Under the Song Dynasty (420), the day was officially declared for Mid-Autumn Festival.

    Because of its central role in the Mid-Autumn festival, mooncakes remained popular even in recent years. For many, mooncakes form a central part of the Mid-Autumn festival experience such that it is now commonly known as 'Mooncake Festival'.

    Ming revolution

    There is also a folk tale about the overthrow of Mongol rule facilitated by messages smuggled in moon cakes.

    Mooncakes were used as a medium by the Ming revolutionaries in their espionage effort to secretly distribute letters in order to overthrow the Mongolian rulers of China in the Yuan dynasty. The idea is said to be conceived by Zhu Yuanzhang (朱元璋) and his advisor Liu Bowen (劉伯溫), who circulated a rumor that a deadly plague was spreading and the only way to prevent it was to eat special mooncakes. This prompted the quick distribution of mooncakes, which were used to hide a secret message coordinating the Han Chinese revolt on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month.

    Another method of hiding the message was printed in the surface of mooncakes as a simple puzzle or mosaic. In order to read the encrypted message, each of the 4 mooncakes packaged together must be cut into 4 parts each. The 16 pieces of mooncake, must then be pieced together in such a fashion that the secret messages can be read. The pieces of mooncake are then eaten to destroy the message.

     

  • Xan Milton
    Xan Milton wrote:

    Woooooo

    thats so many history with moon cake .

    thats pretty interesting .

    guess who is The old man on the moon

    and who is the First lady on the moon

  • Maya-eric
    Maya-eric wrote:

    I  like  mooncake!

    in  this  year,  we have  8 days  holiday,  it's  very  great !

  • Peter Baird
    Peter Baird wrote:

     I have 4 years worth of moon cakes piled up in my kitchen. Can't stand them, although they do work as an appetite supressent.

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

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    I think of them as a afternoon tea supplement, much better than the usual western cakes and biscuits ... if you have dinner guest, use them as pre-dinner snack

     

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

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    or if you are annoyed by some idiots honking their cars outside your home, you can put the old mooncakes in the freezer, then throw them at the car window ...

     

  • Peter Baird
    Peter Baird wrote:

    ha ha! Mooncakes as a weapon. I finally found a use for them.

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

    ...

    Trust me, they are lethal as hell ... well, anything kept in the freezer long enough can be lethal, but things like mooncakes take longer to soften ...

    Another one is Christmas fruit cake (also known as Christmas pudding) ... I actually like it if it is heated and then pour some custard or condensed milk or two scoops of ice cream on top ... they are natually hard as rock, so even if it was not put into the freezer, it is quite lethal too ... hahaha ... enjoy your cakes

  • Jem Lim
    Jem Lim wrote:

    叮噹, piece of cake eh? lol

    we should start a new thread on fruit cake this time.

     

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

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    Hahaha ... that was not my intention, someone asked me about mooncakes, so I did a quick search from Wiki ... I just realised that Xan works for Crowne Plaza, and they have a special promotion for mooncakes, if you need some house bricks, you can talk to her ...

  • Jem Lim
    Jem Lim wrote:

    is it good? like seriously it;s hard to find some awesome bakeshops around jing..

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

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    Give her a call to find out ... Xan Milton

    I am not a huge mooncake fan myself, and we often find one or two sitting at the back of the fridge from last year, hence the concept of using them as weapons ...

  • Jem Lim
    Jem Lim wrote:

    weapons AKA paper weights!

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

    ...

    Hahaha ...

    It is Crowne Plaza (Intercontinental group) we are talking about here, so it cannot be that bad ...

     

  • Xan Milton
    Xan Milton wrote:

    Dear Peter,
    It is Xan here, do you remember me? Thank you for telling me about all the interesting stories of Thailand. I have not seen you since you last visited my hotel, how are you doing these days?

    As you might (or might not) realize, the mid autumn festival is approaching soon, and our hotel had cooked up 4 delicious flavours of mooncakes to commemorate such festivity. Please come to see me when you have got some free time if you want to sample them, and as always, you would be welcome to do so.

  • Jem Lim
    Jem Lim wrote:

    Xan, are you giving away samples??? 叮噹 doesn't like mooncakes so much (read the thread up) HAHAHAHA!!! I can always be a substitute for taste test. :P

     

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

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    Hahaha ... I am definitely interested in sampling something that Xan has, but mooncake is definitely not it ...

  • Joy
    Joy wrote:

    I love mooncakes and i wanted  to try to make it by myself this year. haha~

  • NN
    NN wrote:

    hmmmm too sweet la,can just taste a little only,otherwise will get urself feel sick...

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

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    我想不到这个世界上,还有什么会比Nina更甜的了...

  • 杜鲁西
    杜鲁西 wrote:

    记得小时候在老家,有个传统,喜欢自家出面做馅,去面点房给点钱借助烘烤机烘烤,长大后人们在忙碌的生活中没有时间去体会亲自动手制作的环节,各个商家在此也看到了一片商机,月饼馅从最传统的枣泥,五仁发展到现在更好吃的鸡蛋,肉松,没有吃不到,只有想不到。。。。。我很喜欢吃月饼,尤其是现在好多中西结合的月饼,水果的,烤牛排的,香甜爽口,重要的是在充满浓浓的中国节日中品尝,让我每次吃的时候都有一种幸福感。

  • Z
    Z wrote:

    Anybody know a good place that sells mooncakes from HK?
    They're the best!

  • 叮噹叔叔 (令狐叮噹)

     

    I remember seeing 荣华月饼 being sold in Beijing, but I cannot be sure where there was.

  • MoMo
    MoMo wrote:

    今年过中秋回家看妈妈~~~呵呵~~小兴奋下~

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