The 15th September marks the wonderful Mid-Autumn Festival (also known as the Moon Festival or Moon Cake Festival) which is celebrated by thousands of people each year. To the Chinese, this festival is the second most important one after the Chinese New Year.
But what is it? And why should we all be culturally celebrating this rich deep history festival.
Luckily I have teamed up with the lovely people over at ChinaIcons to bring you just that. ChinaIcons is a YouTube channel (that has just over 1K subscribers and upload videos every Wednesday) that are dedicated to discovering today’s China and bringing it to you in an informally, energetic and creative way. Through time-lapse and drone travel videos of the wonders of China, such as the mountains and gorges of this beautiful country, to in-depth, break-neck, behind the doors video diaries of some of the most unexpected places. And of course, my favourite part- easy to follow cooking videos, creating some of the tastiest looking dishes. ChinaIcons is 100% your go-to place for everything Chinese- and with their easy to read blog as well as their YouTube channel you can always find what you need, when you need it!
The Mid-Autumn Festival is one that has over 3,000 years of history and is celebrated when the moon is believed to be at its biggest and fullest. To the Chinese, a full moon is a symbol of family reunion happiness and prosperity and so this festival is one that is dedicated to family reunions and peace and love. Mooncakes are the staple food choice for this festival which are round shaped cakes, to symbolise eternity and are made from pastry and encase a sweet, dense filling. They can have different fillings depending on the part of China they are made in. The most popular ones are made from Lotus Seed Paste, Sweet Bean Paste, Nut and Seeds, Egg Yolks and Jubube Paste, but some are known to have more savoury fillings such as Cream Cheese, Seafood and Roast Pork. People celebrating the festival, will share mooncakes with their friends and families as they represent long life and happiness, and to receive one is to be known as sending wishes for success and good health (so thank you for ChinaIcons for sending me one!!) Mooncakes are supposed to be eaten in wedges, and served with a strong Chinese tea, and the price for one can range from anything from ¥5 (57p) to ¥200 (£22.64).
The festival is celebrated through traditional and meaningful celebrations normally in households not only in China, but also through their neighbouring countries and the celebrations consist of eating mooncakes, having dinner with family, lighting lanterns and gazing and worshipping the moon- and any festival that celebrates spending time with your family, celebrating good health, wealth and success and eating food is a celebration that I think we all should be doing.
Along with the mooncake, ChinaIcons also sent me over a mystery package filled with all kinds of yummy Chinese goodies, and strong ‘gunpowder’ green tea- so that I can celebrate the festival with my own family- and if you want to get your festival on, why not head to China Town in London for a celebration, with live performances from Lion Dance, Martial Arts and Hong Kong Canto-Pop and of course the chance to sample your very own mooncake.
Will you be celebrating the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival today?
*Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by ChinaIcons.
brb, worshipping the moon.