Moon cakes are made during the 8th month of the lunar Chinese calender. The actual date for celebrating the festival is on the 15th of the 8th month of the lunar Chinese calendar. Usually wooden moulds are used for making moon cakes. Nowadays plastic moulds are used because it is much cheaper. There are many designs on the mould. It can be bought at any shops selling ingredients for cakes.
* 1/2 kg sugar
* 1 1/2 cups water
* 2 slices lemon
Boil the syrup for about an hour until it turns golden brown.To test whether it is ready, pour a tbsp of syrup in cold water. If it separates it is ready. If it turns into a ball, the syrup is too thick. Add more more water.When done, keep in a cool place for 2 weeks before use.The remaining syrup can be kept for future use.
* 350-400 g wheat flour
* 60 g golden syrup
* 50 g oil
* 1 tsp alkaline water
Prepare the pastry: Mix all the pastry ingredients in a bowl. If it is too soft, add in more flour. It should be soft but not stick to the fingers. Divide into 6 portions. Each portion about 50 g. Let it rest for at least an hour.
* 500 g red beans (wash and soak overnight)
* 500 g sugar
* 200 ml oil
* 1 tsp vanilla essence
* 50 g pumpkin seeds (locally known as ‘kuaci’)
1. Cook the red beans till soft and dry. Blend red bean in a mixer while still hot with the skin till fine.
2. To cook the bean paste, pour in sugar and red bean paste in a wok and keep stirring to prevent sticking. When mixture thickens, add in oil and essence.Keep stirring till cook. When it is ready, the paste will leave the side of the wok clean. Dish out and cool it in the refrigerator.
3. When the paste is firm, mix pumpkin seed with the red bean paste. Divide into 6 portions. Each portion about 150g.
4. Flatten each dough and add filling in the centre. Wrap the dough into a ball. Dust it with flour.
5. Shape the dough in a moon cake mould. Press slightly. Then knock it out. Place in a baking tray and brush with beaten eggs. Bake for 15 minutes at 100 degrees Celsius.
Note: Other fillings such as lotus seeds, green beans or yam can be used. Egg yolks can be added in center of the fillings if used. Steam the egg yolk before adding to the filling.
Cooking time: 15 minutes.
Preparation time: 15 minutes.
For better visualization on the steps on how to make the moon cake, there are step by step picture in the authors recipe blog here.