September 27th, 2020
The Mid-Autumn Festival is Thursday — the fifteenth day of the eighth month of the Chinese lunar calendar. The festival dates back as far as 3,000 years and began as a form of moon worship. These days, the festival celebrates the autumn harvest and families gather together to dine, light lanterns and share mooncakes.
Mooncakes are available throughout China and Southeast Asia — often beautifully packaged in elegant boxes — in the weeks leading up to the day of the Mid-Autumn Festival. They’re round like the moon, stamped with intricate designs on top and come in all kinds of flavors like sesame, green tea, lotus seed, mango and even durian. The outside shell is either pastry or “snowskin” — a soft, delicate wrap made of glutinous rice similar to Japanese mochi.
Mooncakes aren’t overly sweet but they are surprisingly dense and heavy, often with a second flavor hidden inside. Cut a mooncake in half and you’ll see a second moon in the middle.
Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!
Photos of the Day: Adding a bit of light to the darkness as we get through the pandemic together. This series features travel photos from my archives, shared with you while staying close to home.