Mooncake Festival - Innovative Tastes Continue



Image Copyright - Intercontinental Singapore


Maple glaze used to give more taste and shimmer to the outer skin or crust pastry.  As new variations of tea arise, so have to be the mooncake creativity in making them.   Poetic names are significant to captivate, attract and make a purchase.  Snow skin,  low sugar, double happiness, assorted.  The moon cake heritage meets with a  modern, fast paced world where elegance, uniqueness and quality are rewarded and sought after.

Colours become more subtle or striking.  Servings become smaller as moon cakes are rich and packed with ingredients.  Moon cakes are bought not necessarily to be consumed, they are icons of respect, honour and love given to deserving recipients.   Tea blends are not limited to Oolong or Black Sesame but widened to the best of Earl Greys and Matcha. Are moon cakes still partaken at quiet family gatherings at home, or now more so in public, at restaurant dinners, community gatherings and political celebrations?  The act of juniors offering prettily dressed up gift boxes now accompany the bringing of wine, dressing up and listening to music at hotel functions.  Bakeries, associations and hotels use the mooncakes as the centre piece to mark anniversaries, occasions and parties.




Creations from 2AM Desserts Holland Village Singapore



Image Copyright - Li Bai Singapore




In the old scheme of things, there can be only four variations - lotus paste, black sesame, five nuts and red bean.  Now the gate has been opened for some time now, you can have a wonderful variety.  Mao Tai and dark chocolate.  Durian, but of the most quality and expensive fruiting breeds like Musang King.  What about cranberry?  Mooncakes are supposed to be a heady mix of savoury, sweet, nutty.  There is amazingly a Kopi-O mooncake, perhaps trying to chase up with the craze in coffee blends.  Cherry Brandy, Chocolate Brandy and Lychee Martini are also lining up to curry your favour and palate.  May be the cream cheese mooncake?  East and West meet in more than a hundred ways.

I would rather have a strawberry and lime Margarita truffle mooncake.

The concept of single or double yolks plus water melon seeds still continue.  There can now at the same time be more of candled macadamia and almond nuts.  Baileys Truffle seems to be rising in use.  Chestnut lotus is a new variation, together with stand out ingredients like rose and pistachio combinations that reduce the over whelming sensation of some old fashioned items.

Mung bean can now be missed with coconut truffle, echoing the Chinese diaspora in south-east Asia.
Pandanus flavours with palm sugar Gula Melaka has been around for several years in Singapore.  I have yet to taste a dried shrimp paste mooncake though.

My fav currently is sea salt caramel truffle or one with peanut butter - hello Adriano Zumbo!!   Bird's nest with custard has the best chances of being a thumbs up with the older generation.

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The Mooncake Festival or Zhongqiujie falls on Sunday evening 27 September 2015.

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