October 1, 2006

5 Days Countdown...

... to Mid-Autumn Festival aka Mooncake Festival (中秋节), which falls on the 6 October this year. The festival is celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th month on the lunar calender. Although there is a legendary story of Chang-Er, with her rabbit and the moon, for many of us its just the mooncakes that we enjoy :)

In Singapore, there are many types of mooncakes available. Many Chinese restaurants and big hotels have come up with their specialty mooncakes. Ice cream mooncakes are available from Swenson's or Haagen Dazs. At Ngee Ann City Shopping Centre, there are many stalls selling mooncakes where you can sample from the first stall to the last stall. The amount that you sample can probably make it to one meal of the day! Open the credit card promotion brochures and you will find at least 10 places where you can have discount when you purchase it with your credit card. I think no where else in the world can you find so many types of mooncakes. Would someone please register us
for the World Guinness Book of Records?

Just between home and office, I have tried mooncakes from 8 different r
estaurants/sources in the last one week:

My sister's boyfriend gave us this from Raffles The Plaza Hotel. His company tied up with the hotel for mooncakes and he was given 2 boxes of this. I like the box, which is like a red cheongsam with the chinese buttons. The box opens up where buttons are.

The inscription 莱 on the mini mooncake means that the mooncake is from 莱佛士
(Raffles) 广场大酒店 (Plaza Hotel). This is white lotus paste with one yolk and... some nut (erm, I don't know what nut is that...)

Sis's boyfriend bought another box from 东海 Teochew Restaurant. Imagine a triangle shape that is rounded at the 3 corners.... the mooncakes come in that shape. There are 3 types in it - green tea snow skin with green tea paste, white snow skin with white lotus paste and yellow snow skin with... (the yellow ones are not eaten yet so I don't know what paste it comes with. I have ruled out durian because there is no smell of durian) The unique thing is that in each mooncake, the core is not egg yolk but chocolate!

大中国 is a shop in Chinatown where they specialises in traditional style. Every Chinese New Year, there will be a long queue of people willing to queue up for their barbeque pork. Dad bought a couple to try. I have not tried it but there is only 1 of it left at home now

I bought one box of white lotus with macadamia nuts (夏果莲蓉)from Tung Lok (同乐)Restaurants. A good friend of mine works in the Group and I got staff discount from her. I like the macadamia nuts in the mooncake. Am gonna get another box of white snow skin with white lotus and single yolk tomorrow. I love white snow skin mooncakes :)

My sister just bought some Hainanese mooncakes (海南月饼). Being a Hainanese, perhaps its nice to try mooncakes of my origins. The size of the mooncake is slight bigger than other 'normal' ones and they are thinner too. I have not tried any at this moment.

My colleague was given a box of
walnut tarts with white lotus seed paste from Harbour City Restaurant (picture on right, right bottom). Although the inside of the mooncake is the same usual white lotus paste, the outer skin of baked skin with walnut gives a different taste to the otherwise-normal mooncake. I like this too!

Others that I have tried but have no photos of... a coffee cheese mooncake, coffee paste and with cheesecake-like paste in the core. It is quite interesting to try. But after a few more bites, I figured that I prefer coffee cheesecake or tiramisu anytime! Some colleagues brought back a box of mooncakes from Shanghai. Erm... let's just say we better stick to those we can find in Singapore ;)

It is better to have mooncakes with some chinsese tea so that you won't feel too rich. Some people have it with pomelo too but I hardly see this nowadays. Well, eat all you can but make sure you exercise to shed all the calories..... ;o

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