Mooncakes are a traditional Chinese (Cantonese) bakery good often offered to friends and family accompanied by Chinese tea, during Mid-Autumn festival (lunar worshiping holiday). Although often filled with red bean or lotus seed paste, Alex bakes them filled with a chocolate and almond paste (a little more of a Western flavour!)
This recipe takes about 1hr 30mins and makes about 20 Mooncakes.
- 150g plain flour
- 90g golden syrup
- 40g vegetable oil (a light oil like sunflower for example)
- a pinch of salt
- 200g ground almonds
- 150g icing sugar
- 3tbsp cocoa powder
- Glaze (alternatively egg wash):
- 150g apricot jam
- 25g moon cake mould with stamps of your choice (found mine on the mooncakeshop)
- a baking tray
- 2 mixing bowls
- a small saucepan
- a small bowl
- a tray or plate
- a rolling pin
- a pastry brush
- cling film
- baking paper
- Mix syrup, oil and salt in a bowl. Add the flour, combine and form a ball.Cover the bowl with cling film and put it in the fridge to let the dough rest for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a second bowl, combine all the ingredients for the filling. Make sure it is mixed up well. Divide the filling into portions of 10g each and shape into balls. Put them on a tray or plate and cover with cling film.
- Just as with the filling, take some dough and create a ball of roughly 10g (there might be excess). Use a rolling pin to flatten out the dough ball to about 2 inches in diameter. Take a ball of filling and wrap it with dough disk you just created. Make sure it is neatly sealed and roll the ball between the palms of your hands afterwards to make sure there are no cracks. Continue until you have 20 balls.
- Preheat your oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Put each ball into the moon cake mould and press down gently right onto the baking tray. You might find it helpful to slightly dust the mould with flour though the dough itself should be oily enough to not stick to it.
- Bake the moon cakes for 10 minutes at 180°C, remove and let them cool for 15 minutes. (At this point you could give them an egg wash before putting them back into the oven). Also you might want to turn the tray or the cakes for a more even browning. Bake for up to 10 minutes until golden. Remove from the oven and let them cool.
- For the glaze (instead of the egg wash), heat the apricot jam in a small saucepan and add a tablespoon of water. Once the jam is hot and runny pour it through a strainer into a bowl and let it cool for bit. Make sure the moon cakes are cool before glazing them with the jam.