How To Make Mooncake For Cantonese Style? the Chinese Mid-autumn festival is just around the corner, so today we are going to make a Cantonese-style mooncake.
It may take you some time,
But there’s no fuss about making it. Let’s do it step by step.
Start with the lotus seeds paste filling.
You will need dried lotus seeds, salt, caster sugar, and vegetable oil.
First off, soak the dried lotus seeds.
Take some time to do this, for at least 6-8 hours.
Soak them until very soft, so that you can easily break them.
Check if there are still some bitter pithes left inside.
Even if you bought those without pithes, you’d better double check.
Just in case you may find this.
Make sure you get rid of every single one of them.
Once you are done, put them in a stew pot and cover with enough water.
Bring it to a boil, and then turn down the heat to low.
Braise for about 2 hours.
How To Make Mooncake For Cantonese Style?
Cook until the water becomes milky, and the lotus seeds fall apart.
You can pick up one and give it a taste, it should be very tender and like melting in your mouth.
Transfer the whole pot in a mixer.
Make sure lotus seeds are submerged under the water.
If there’s not enough of water left, and more.
Less water makes it hard to beat in a mixer.
Beat until very velvety and smooth like this.
In a nonstick pan, drop them in.
Warm up over medium heat.
Now add in 1/3 of your vegetable oil first.
Stir constantly to help the lotus seeds paste absorb the oil.
I suggest use a neutral vegetable oil without any strong scent.
Here I am using grape seeds oil.
Once the oil is absorbed, and then add another 1/3.
Again,add in the remaining 1/3 of oil.
Do it like this to add oil for three times.
Now, it’s time to season the mixture.
Add in some salt.
And all of your caster sugar in one go.
Stir to dissolve the sugar completely.
Here I am using a bit more salt, because our mooncake has a salty egg yolk inside, so I want my filling to be a little salty as well, not just be sweet.
With a little salty touch in the lotus paste, the flavor will be better combined with a salty egg yolk.
Keep stir frying over the heat, and allow the water amongst lotus paste to evaporate.
You will see the paste is gradually getting thickened up.
Eventually it will come all together into one large dough-like piece.
It will along your spatula when you move it around.
And you can feel that there’s not much water left in the mixture.
Once done, transfer and spread the paste on a plate. Let it sit to cool.
While we are waiting, prepare the mooncake dough.
You will need plain flour, honey, dietary alkali, and groundnut oil.
Let me introduce the alkali first.
It also goes by the name “dietary alkali”, and it’s not the same thing as baking soda.
I’m using it because dietary alkali makes it easier to color the dough.
So that we will end up with a beautiful golden crust on a mooncake.
This is optional though. If you don’t have access to it, just skip it, and your mooncake will have a lighter color. But it’s absence won’t affect the taste.
First off, put the dietary alkali in a large bowl.
Add in about 1/2 tsp. of water, and let alkali dissolve.
Add in honey.
Groundnut oil goes in.
Whisk them together until they are thoroughly blended.
Normally, mooncakes for sale are made of transformed syrup as part of the dough crust.
But it’s not very accessible.
After testing myself, using honey as a replacement is totally okay.
But please use a kind of honey that is transparent, runny without crystallization, and neutral without any strong flavor.
Next, add in plain flour.
Mix and fold with a spatula.
Mix until they form a dough.
At this point, the dough is very soft and sticky, so leave it to rest for a while before we work on it.
Transfer the dough on a piece of cling film, and then wrap it up.
Let it sit at room temperature and rest for about 1-2 hours.
Now let’s do some prep with salty yolks.
I suggest you crack a whole salty egg and get the salty yolk out.
And it will be more oily in the mooncake.
Crack the egg in a bowl, and you will see the firm and round egg yolk.
Rinse it in water to clean off any egg whites and sticky liquid.
Strain the yolks and wipe off excess water with kitchen towel.
And that’s it.
So now we have salty yolks, lotus seeds paste and our mooncake dough.
It’s time to assemble the mooncakes. And we also need some egg wash for later.
Next, let’s portion the fillings.
Since we are going to make mooncakes with a mold, so we must ensure them with equal size.
So you need a kitchen scale to accurately measure each filling.
Get a yolk on it first and weigh it.
This yolk weighs about 15g, so I will add 20g of lotus seeds paste to it.
Together 35g in total.
And that’s how much filling you need for a 50g mooncake.
Since yolks have different weights, so you have to weigh them one by one.
And then add the rest with lotus seeds paste so that they weigh 35g in total.
Once done, get one portion of lotus seeds paste, roll in into a ball, and then press down.
Wrap one salty yolk in the middle.
Gather the edge around the part between your thumb and index finger.
Make sure you wrap the yolk in.
And then roll it into a ball. Now you have a filling ball.
Once you finish wrapping all the filling balls, now go ahead and measure your crust for each mooncake.
For every 50g filling ball, you will need 15g of crust.
Since the recipe is exactly for 20 mooncakes, so you’d better be very precise and accurate.
Now we are done with the measurement stuff.
Get one portion of crust dough, and cover the rest under a piece of cling film.
Roll it into a ball, and then press down.
Right now the dough should not be very sticky.
If you feel a little sticky, lightly flour your hands.
Set one filling ball in the middle of the crust.
Flip, and them wrap the edge evenly around the filling ball.
Flip it again, set the filling ball with one thumb, and gradually pull up the edge between your thumb and index finger.
Gently stretch the crust up around the filing like this.
Finally, use your hands to roll it.
And gather the edges over to seam and pinch the filing on top.
Roll it again into a ball, and a mooncake dough is done.
Very lightly flour each mooncake dough.
And roll it again to prevent them from sticking around.
Now, turn on your oven and preheat it to 180C/356F.
Prepare the roasting pan and tin.
This is a mooncake press.
It often comes with other plastic coins with different patterns.
Equip one with your favorite pattern, and then secure by switching the handle on top.
Get one mooncake dough, and roll it into a longer ball with your hands.
Gently set it in the press.
Keep a little gap between your dough and the interior of the tool.
And then press it down on the silicon baking sheet, or you can use parchment paper instead.
Once down, gently lift the tool.
Voila, a mooncake!
When you are pressing the mooncake dough, set the tool with one hand, and then press it down with the other.
Do not press it too hard, or your dough will squeeze out from the bottom of the mold.
Pop them in the oven.
Bake under 180C/356F for 5 minutes until set.
Now let’s make an egg wash to add some color.
Here I have one egg yolk and a tbs. of egg white.
Whisk them together evenly.
Dip a brush in it, and remember to get rid of excess egg wash on the edge of the bowl.
Make sure you have only a little egg wash on the brush.
Get the mooncakes out of the oven after baking for 5 minutes, lightly brush some egg wash on top.
You can see that I only brush with very little egg wash.
If you cover too much on the mooncake, you will mix up the beautiful pattern on top.
Just lightly brush a thin layer of egg wash over the pattern and that’s it.
Pop them back in the over, bake for another 15 minutes under 180C/356F.
Once they are out of the oven, transfer them on a wire rack to cool immediately.
Allow them to cool down to room temperature, and them transfer them in a food container, seal and store.
Now that the mooncakes are dry and a little firm, and they are not very tasty.
You ‘d better store them for 1-2 days, and then the crust become oily.
So then the crust will be glossier, and the mooncakes will be softer, very mush alike the inside filling.
Now they taste the best.
Let’s take a look at the inside.
50g of a mooncake with a whole salty yolk in the filling, it tastes not that rich and sweet, but more balanced.
If you are more towards a sweeter end, you may not use a whole salty yolk, and half of it will be enough.
As long as you have the same amount of lotus seed paste and yolk, it will be okay.
As I mentioned earlier, using fresh salty yolk in a mooncake, you will see that it becomes very oily now.
With a little squeeze, and you will see the appetizing yolk oil leaking out.
It feels safe to have homemade mooncakes. The lotus seed paste gives a very tangy aroma.
And the mooncakes turns out very balanced without being too sweet nor too salty.
Along with a fresh and oily salty yolk, and a light touch of honey on the crust, I hope it lights up your Mid-autumn festival.
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