Lotus paste mooncake

“Homebaked traditional moon cakes ~ the most special gift for your family this year.. And celebrate a heart-warming Mid-Autumn Festival this year!”

Traditional (baked) moon cake has to have more effort to make, as compared to snow skin moon cake. As mentioned, you need to bake it! Extended hour will also be needed to prepare the moon cake dough. Some of the ingredients used in baked moon cake may even sound alien to you.. But, you won’t know how heart warming it could be, if you do not try making one for your loved one with your own hands. Well, I used ready lotus paste and red bean paste for my moon cakes (2 flavours). And it made the making process much easier this way.

So, start making moon cakes now! I made single yolk white lotus paste moon cakes and red bean paste moon cakes the other day! What I wish to share here is the single yolk white lotus paste moon cake…

Please see:
Yields 10 – 12 large moon cakes
Ingredients
280 gram of Golden syrup (糖胶)
100 ml peanut oil
½ tablespoon of alkaline water (碱水)
380 – 400 gram of multi-purpose flour/ top flour or Hong Kong flour

1 kg of white lotus paste
10 – 12 salted duck egg yolk, brushed yolks with sesame oil and baked at 150°C for 10 min
100 grams of melon seed, toasted at 150°C for 5 – 6 min

1 egg yolk mixed with a little egg white (for brushing purpose)

Utensil:
large wooden/ plastic moon cake mould (about 3″ – 3.5″ in diameter), with design of your preference

Method

1) Weigh 280 gram of Golden syrup (with weighing scale). Then, mix syrup, peanut oil and alkaline water together in a large mixing bowl and beat with electrical mixer at medium speed for 2 – 4 minutes, or until shinny and smooth consistency. Slowly add in flour and beat at low speed till just well combined. Texture of dough should be moist, soft, greasy and chewy-like. Let dough rest for at least 5 hours, or longer. Need not to refrigerate the resting dough, if it is to be rested not longer than 2 days. You may simply cover dough with a piece of dry cloth, and leave it at room temperature up to 2 days, before use. (My dough was rested a night long.. about 12 hours.)


2) Cut the rested dough into parts of 40 – 60 gram each, for big-sized moon cakes (depends on how big your mould is). You may form each part into ball, for easy making into moon cakes.


3) Same to the lotus paste. Mix melon seeds into lotus paste. Then, form lotus paste into large lumps of about the size of tennis ball (try one out to see if the amount is correctly used).


4) Roll out each dough ball (flatten it using finger tips will do) into thin sheet with the size of the sheet not too much larger than your palm size.


5) Place the thin sheet on your clean and lightly floured palm, and place one lump of lotus paste ball on top of the sheet. Lightly press and spread it out on the sheet. Place and wrap 1 yolk in the middle of the lotus paste.

If without adding yolk, simply wrap a lump of lotus paste and seal with the dough skin.


6) Wrap and seal the lotus paste and yolk in the dough. Lightly flour the moon cake dough after sealed and shaped circularly.


7) Clean moon cake mould and dry it completely beforehand. Then, lightly flour the mould before placing the moon cake dough into it.


8) Place moon cake dough in and press firmly to get a clear indention of design on the surface of mooncake. The dough should be completely occupied the space of the mould without any excess around the border.


9) Now, be ready to knock out the moon cake dough. Place a thick book or large wooden chopping board on a solid table top. Overturn the mould and knock out moon cake dough with strength.

To knock out the cake easily: You may first knock the top of the wooden mould against the thick book or chopping board, followed by the sides, one hit each of left and right side, before overturn the mould to remove moon cake from it. I personally think it is easier to use the plastic mould. Less flour should be dusted on it.


10) Place moon cakes on a greased baking tray. Bake the moon cakes on the top rack at 190°C, for about 10 minutes, or until light brown. Remove from oven, brush (lightly) the surface of lightly browned moon cakes with egg yolk. Place moon cakes back to the oven and bake with same temperature for another 6 – 10 minutes, or until moon cakes are golden brown.


Remove moon cakes from oven to cool before serve, or store in a nice packaging as festive gift to you family and friends! This traditional baked moon cake can be stored up to 2 weeks.

One large lotus paste with single yolk moon cake counts about 800kcal! Eat moderately, please, especially with yolks in it, even if you are eating it just once a year.

Tips: If you prefer darker moon cake skin colour in appearance, you don’t bake it longer for the darker tone effect as it won’t help. What you do is to place the completed moon cakes dough (already wrapped with lotus paste in it) on the table to ‘breath’ for 2 – 3 hours, before placing into the mould to shape, and bake. After breathing the dough, the baked moon cakes will be presented in darker skin colour.
* May reduce oven temperature to 180°C, if dough rested for more than 12 hours.
* How to measure how much lotus paste to use for one moon cake: gauge and take 1 lump of lotus paste, and place inside the mould. The lump of lotus paste should not occupied the whole mould but leaving a small gap around the mould for moon cake skin. If add egg yolk, reduce the weight of lotus paste with the weight of egg yolk added. For examples: 1 mooncake requires 200 grams of lotus paste. If add 1 egg yolk weights 20 grams, 200 grams minus off 20 grams = 180 grams of lotus paste to be used for 1 single yolk lotus paste moon cake. It’s also ok, if you realise insufficient lotus paste used only when you already pressed it into the mould, just open up the dough skin to stuff in more lotus paste (need not to remove whole dough from mould), and seal it back again will do. Even if it’s not nicely shaped, remove and reshape it, too!
* Weight of golden syrup should be measured in term of gram (g), NOT mililitres (ml).
* Alkaline water is available in major baking supplies stores or supermarkets (baking section). It has to be added for smoother skin texture.
* Type of flour can be low-protein flour, multi-purpose flour, top flour or Hong Kong flour. Sift or not sieved, both are OK.
* Add 380 gram of flour first, if texture appears too dry (like bread crumb texture), add 20 gram more, to make up to 400 grams and use bare hand to knead and form into dough.
* Do not over-brush the egg solution on top of the moon cake as it might affect the design on its surface.