Friday, September 28, 2012

Jung Chau Jit Faai Lohk

Happy Mid Autumn Festival! At the full moon on the fifteenth day of the eighth month of the Chinese Lunar Calendar, Jung Chau Jit is celebrated by fantastic displays of paper lanterns. Parents take children with little lanterns to a hill top to light and release the lanterns for good luck in the harvest.
 Here are some pictures of a fabulous display at the Tsim Sha Tsui clock tower, just 5 minutes walk from the apartment.

                            A display of giant lanterns in the shape of the terracotta warriors

It is aso the custom to eat special cakes, called yuht beng or moon cakes. They are an acquired taste!They look like a pork pie but are filled with very heavy sweet lotus paste with a preserved duck egg yolk, to represent the full moon, in the middle. .It is customary to give them to friends and family and businesses give them to loyal customers. I believe the Peninsula Hotel has very good ones, costing around £25 for a box of four. As you couldn't eat a whole one, this is not as expensive as it seems; it's OK to cut into 4 and offer a small piece to guests. (That way, you could mash it around the plate and get away with not actually eating any of it).
These are the traditional ones, but you can also get icy mooncakes and snowy mooncakes, with a light rice paper outer and filled with strawberry sorbet or chocolate bean paste(!). HagenDaz  do ice cream ones but I haven't tried those yet.

A selection of moon cakes; the front one has the traditional filling.

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