Traditional mooncakes are quite large and as such are rarely eaten all at once by one person. Made from a standard mooncake mould, they measure around 10cm in diameter and are around 4cm high. Contained within a pastry is a thich centrem often made from typical mooncake ingredients of lotus seed paste or red bean paste and are baked. Often, a salted egg yolk can also be found. They are imprinted with a stamp of Chinese characters depicting, amongst other things, the name of the bakery or chef.
Because of their size, mooncakes are generally eaten by cutting a wedge from the cake. Mooncakes are made especially for the Mid-Autumn Festival for celebration which is held in accordance with the lunar calendar.
Here we share the recipe for Blue Lotus Mooncakes...
For the Lotus Mooncake, these are the ingredients:
- 100g glutinous rice flour
- 100g icing sugar
- 2 tbsp shortening
- 150ml blue lotus or pandan liquid-- this liquid is made from soaking approximately 10 Blue Lotus Flowers in water until the water reaches a purple colour.
- Extra flour for rolling and for the mooncake mould.
For the Lotus Seed Paste, these are the ingredients:
- 600g lotus seeds with skin, washed
- 1 tbsp alkaline water
- 390g sugar
- 300g groundnut oil
- 50g maltose
- 60g melon seeds, roasted until golden brown
- Water, enough to cover lotus seeds in pot
- 60 g melon seeds
Instructions for Paste
- Bring water to boil and then add alkaline water and lotus seeds. Boil for around 10 mins. Remove from heat and discard the boiling water. Remove skin from lotus seeds by rubbing under running water or in a bowl of water. Remove tips and stems of lotus seeds (if any).
- Add enough water to cover the lotus seeds and boil until tender. Remove from heat.
- Puree the lotus seed in the food processor by dividing it into 2 or 3 batches. Filter the puree with a fine sieve. *We skipped the sieving part.
- Glazed a wok with 3-4 tablespoons groundnut oil under low heat. Add in 1/4 cup of sugar. Stir-fry sugar over low heat till sugar dissolves and turns golden. Add in lotus seed puree and remaining sugar. Note: If you want to adjust the sweetness, do not add all the sugar. Add little by little to adjust the sweetness to your liking.
- Stir until the paste becomes almost dry. Add in a little oil and stir until combined before adding more oil. Stir constantly until the paste becomes thick.
- Add maltose and stir non-stop. Once paste starts to leave the sides of the wok, it should be ready. Dish up to cool.
- Once lotus seed paste is cooled, add melon seeds and mix the paste until combined. Your lotus seed paste is now ready.
Instructions for Mooncake
- Pour rice flour into a large flat metal receptacle.
- Make a well in the center and add icing sugar.
- Add shortening and rub until combined.
- Add blue lotus liquid, which can be substituted for pandan.
- Using one hand, mix the liquid in with the dry ingredients until combined (it’s important to be very delicate when doing this and don’t overwork the mixture.
- Get a ball of lotus seed paste and push a hole in the centre. Add a salted egg into the hole and work very quickly (and with both hands) cover the egg yolk with the lotus seed paste.
- Roll out the mooncake pastry into a log and then cut into equal pieces.
- Press down between two pieces of plastic to prevent it from sticking and roll out to a size that will be large enough to cover the filling.
- Place the lotus seed paste ball into the centre of the pastry and, working quickly once again, rotate the lotus paste in one direction and the pastry in the other, until the pastry covers it all.
- Lightly flour the mooncake mould and the mooncake ball and then push it into the mould.
Tap the mould gently on a hard surface until the mooncake comes out.