Monday, 28 September 2015

Mid-Autumn Festival

Yesterday was Mid-Autumn Festival! For those of you who haven't got a clue what I'm on about, it's basically China's Thanksgiving. It's celebrated on the 15th day (full moon day) of the 8th Chinese lunar month with history of this festival, dating almost to the beginning of China's history. There's also a story that goes with this festival:
'A strange phenomenon occurred one day — 10 suns arose in the sky instead of one, blazing the earth. Houyi, an expert archer, stepped forward to try to save the earth. He successfully shot down nine of the suns, becoming an instant hero. He eventually became king and married a beautiful maiden named Chang’e. But Houyi grew to become a greedy and tyrannical ruler. He sought immortality by ordering an elixir be created to prolong his life. The elixir in the form of a single pill was almost ready when Chang’e came upon it. She purposely swallowed the pill so he would not be immortal and cause pain for the people forever. This angered King Houyi, who went after his wife. Trying to flee, she jumped out the window of a chamber at the top of the palace—and, instead of falling, she floated into the sky toward the Moon. Chang'e has lived on the moon ever since, with a giant jade rabbit as her companion. You can see the shape of a rabbit underneath a cinnamon tree in the shadows of the moon.'
Generally on this day, extended families will gather together and eat traditional foods. One being the Mooncake. The one pictured above is filled with lotus and one egg yolk. The egg yolk symbolises the full moon. Some mooncakes don't have any yolks and some have four, it's all personal preference. There's also many flavours including the more traditional red bean, lotus and sesame or some modern ones filled with custard, cream cheese or yogurt. There are even mooncakes made out of jelly or ice-cream. Lanterns are also a huge part of the Mid-Autumn festivities. People use to release lanterns into the sky (yes, like the Tangled movie) but now a days they're hung around houses and the streets.

Since it's just mum and I, we just cooked up a big dinner and ate lot's of moon cake. Actually we cooked far too much and I ended up eating the same food for lunch and dinner today.

Wishing you a Happy Mid-Autumn Festival! 
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