Sunday, September 30, 2012

Happy Moon Festival! 中秋節快樂!

The Moon Festival is on September 30 this year! It is the 15th day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar. I made a post two years ago (gosh, is my blog that old?) about the legends and traditions here

This year I managed to order a set of ICE CREAM mooncakes from Coldstone! They were quite expensive at NT$995/~US$30 for six, but I was very excited about them! Having grown up with traditional mooncakes all my life, novelty ones seem like so much fun!

Coldstone Mooncake Set
I bought this set because it could be delivered to your nearest 7-11 for pickup, which is so convenient!

Though ice cream mooncakes may seem indulgent, they actually have less calories than some traditional varieties <_<;; This set contains two strawberry flavors, two coffee flavors, and two Tie Guan Yin (a type of tea) flavors. Each mooncake is less than 300 calories, which is still a lot, but if you split the mooncakes with others it's OK! Unfortunately this set is probably not available outside of Asia ;) Sorry to my international readers! You can buy traditional mooncakes at your local Asian grocer, though! Here is my outfit from today: 2012 Moon Festival Outfit
Click the photo to make it larger

I wore bunnies for the Jade Rabbit! Such a selfless fellow!

In addition to eating mooncakes, a new, modern tradition that has been added is barbecuing! It's only a couple decades old of a tradition, but barbecues are a fun get-together activity! My family is more traditional, so we didn't barbecue and just had a family dinner with my mom's side of the family instead.
My mommy made this feast all by herself!
2012 Moon Festival Meal

Photo of the actual mooncake take on my HTC Radar phone and edited with Photogram:
2012 Moon Festival
I am pretty sad to say that they weren't very good. The ice cream portions were really lovely, but the chocolate shells were too sweet and drowned out the ice cream flavors. In order of sweetness, they go Tie Guan Yin at least sweet (very delicious - I don't think this flavor is available outside of Asia, though!), coffee in the middle, and strawberry at the top!

My mom was clever and just scooped out the ice cream centers and left the shells. Next time, I'll just buy the ice cream!

Perhaps next year I will give the Starbucks or Mister Donut mooncakes a go ;)

Some more traditional mooncakes:
2012 Moon Festival Mooncakes
Pineapple with egg yolk, mung bean, and more pineapple with salted egg yolk

And yet more mooncakes!!
2012 Moon Festival Mooncakes
Taro, red bean with salted egg yolk (I love salted egg yolk!) on the right, and pineapple with salted egg yolk and mushroom with meat on the left

This is a pomelo:
2012 Moon Festival Pomelo
Even though the outside shape is oblong, the inside is actually round! It is like a grapefruit where the fiber part is inedible. I carefully peeled it all apart while trying to keep the pulp intact~

Check out my (messy) handiwork below:
2012 Moon Festival Pomeloes

Will you be celebrating the Moon Festival? Even if you are not Chinese, it is a great time to get together with your friends and family and enjoy viewing the moon together. The holiday falls on a weekend this year, which is really lovely!