Mooncakes in Singapore are an integral part of the festivities surrounding the Mid-Autumn Festival, yet, the numerous varieties of mooncakes and possible filling combinations may be somewhat confusing. Mooncakes may be found in a wide variety of flavours and forms, and sizes in today’s market. It is beneficial to have a fundamental understanding of mooncakes, regardless of whether you want to prepare them at home or purchase them from a bakery.
The Basics of Mooncakes
A standard mooncake comprises a pastry case, often known as a shell, and a filled centre. Casing and filling combinations are plentiful, resulting in infinite possible mooncake permutations. Mooncakes are prepared by pressing batter into ornate moulds, imparting intricate patterns onto the finished product. Mooncakes are typically compact in size and can weigh up to 250 grammes each. Their diameter ranges from around 5 to 10 centimetres, while their height can reach up to 5 centimetres.
The thoughtfully crafted pastries are meant to represent the Mid-Autumn Festival traditions of appreciating the moon’s beauty and spending time gazing at its light. During this joyous holiday, celebratory cakes like these are frequently presented as presents to members of one’s family, as well as to acquaintances and colleagues from one’s professional life.
A Variety of Mooncakes to Choose From
Mooncakes are typically made in the oven and feature either a sweet or savoury filling inside of a very thin pastry crust. These mooncakes are produced from a straightforward dough that consists of wheat flour, syrup, eggs, and oil. They are then baked.
There is an almost infinite variety of fillings available, including sweet bean, lotus seed, fruit and nuts, as well as savoury fillings such as seasoned chicken or pork, salted egg yolks and Chinese sausage. The cakes are often savoured at room temperature and paired with hot tea as the beverage of choice.
The mooncakes are given a golden and glossy finish by using an egg yolk wash as the final step in the baking process. This gives the mooncakes a golden colour.
Mooncakes made with snow skin are unbaked cakes with a sweet filling and a shell that is soft and doughy. Fillings such as taro, sweet bean, and durian paste are popular. The fluffy snow skin is created by utilising roasted glutinous rice flour, and the process does not involve any heat or frying.
The roasted glutinous rice flour is mixed with simple syrup to produce a pliable dough, which is subsequently moulded into ornamental cakes using various utensils. To improve the flavour of the white dough, it is common practice to add food colouring and flavourings like pomelo essence, cocoa powder and matcha powder. Mooncakes can also be served at room temperature and accompanied by hot tea when eaten this way.
Mooncakes made of agar or jelly are variations of the more conventional baked and snow skin varieties, and they have gained popularity over the past few years. Decorative moulds are used to construct these mooncakes, which are formed by stacking jelly concoctions.
The mooncakes receive their structure and smooth texture from the use of agar agar, which is a vegetarian jelly. The mooncakes are placed in the refrigerator once the jelly mixture has had enough time to solidify and become firm. Mooncakes made with agar are very reviving when they are served cooled.