Thursday, September 19, 2013

Mid-Autumn Festival


 Happy Mid-Autumn Festival! 

Also called the Mooncake Festival, it is a traditional Chinese and Vietnamese holiday. It falls on the 15th of the eighth month in the Chinese Calendar, which always has a full moon (the lunar calendar makes this sort of planning a lot easier). The day also heavily features the delicious mooncake.
The festivities actually began almost two weeks ago, with the street light-up here in Chinatown. Performances and music marked the evening, and fireworks capped off this opening to the festival. As you can see, Chinese lanterns play a prominent role in the decorations.

Opening fireworks for the festival
Dragon dancers. Yes, the head actually lights up, which was a tad terrifying.

The actual date of the Mid-Autumn Festival this year is Sept. 19. My first mooncake was melon seed, which was really delicious. The picture on the right shows the rather elaborate packaging, which might have been a big factor in my purchase. The free tote bag didn't hurt either, which you can see in the back; however, the color selection of teal and off-yellow weren't the best.


In the evening, I joined the K5 running club for a jog around Labrador Park. The BayRun was a blast, as the route was incredible scenic and the nearby buildings were your typical towers of glitz and glamour. After finishing, we all joined for some mooncake and Chinese tea. K5 really knows how to do post-run refreshments. With Chinese lanterns hanging up by glow sticks, we had a grand time.

The mooncakes I sampled here were the single egg yolk (not my favorite) and halal, which very good. Halal is the term for Muslim food, and is quite general, as it describes the type of food and preparation allowed by the religion. But asking what was exactly in the halal mooncakes didn't uncover what was actually. 




I had never heard of this holiday before coming to Singapore. The timing is pretty great, since there is a big holiday gap between Labor Day and Halloween (Columbus Day has never gotten its proper respect). And mooncakes, ahh. If you ever run across them, make the purchase. Although the consumer should be warned, mooncake prices can run into the hundreds of dollars. Yes, they are kind of a big deal. Needless to say, I went for the 4 for $20 deal (and free tote bag!).
Google Doodle of the day. It apparently wasn't shown on the US homepage.

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