Monday, October 1, 2012

Mooncake Festival

The Mooncake Festival fell on the 30th of September this year and it was wonderful to be in Phuket Old Town on that day.

Phuket has a great number of links to the Chinese community and is thus rich in Chinese traditions. If you want to learn more about the growth of the Chinese Community in Phuket I recommend that you visit the Phuket Thai Hua Museum.

The Chinese celebrate this lunar festival by distributing "mooncakes". The mooncake is thin pastry enveloping a sweet dense filling – traditionally made from red bean or lotus seed paste. These days you can find all sorts of fillings, including shrimp and durian, while some have a salted egg yolk in the middle to enhance taste. Each cake is imprinted on the top with a Chinese symbol representing ‘longevity’ or ‘harmony’ or "fortune". You are meant to cut and share the cake by eating only a small wedge.

The celebrations that I saw involved eating mooncakes (obviously), matchmaking, markets, floating lanterns, burning incense and Dragon Dances.

If you are not lucky enough to see this at least try a mooncake or visit a Chinese Temple – I was lucky and did them all.


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