Taipei Air Station - 1966 - - - " What you have in the end are memories"......... Photo Courtesy of Richard Reesh.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Mid-Autumn Festival Next Weekend

Next Monday, 12 September 2011, Taiwan celebrates Mid-Autumn Festival. 

Some folks may remember the celebration as the Lantern Festival or Mooncake Festival.

Mid-Autumn Festival is held on the 15th day of the eighth month in the Chinese Calendar, which is in September or early October in the Gregorian calendar.

I remember as a kid, there was some kind of celebration on the night of the Harvest Moon.  That beautiful full moon lifting into the night sky always brought a WOW feeling when you realized how large it was.

The date parallels the autumn equinox of the solar calendar, when the moon is at its fullest and roundest. The traditional food of this festival is the mooncake, of which there are many different varieties.

Beginning in the 1980s, folks in Taiwan began to barbecue meat outdoors during the Mid-Autumn Festival, and it has become a widespread way to celebrate the holiday with families.  It is my understanding that the smell of BBQ permeates the air for two or three days during the holiday celebration.

I heard a story of how BBQ and the Mid Autumn Festival began.  Seems a soy sauce company ran advertisements promoting a new soy based BBQ sauce.  In the ad, they were barbecuing meat outside and watching the New Full Moon rise.  The sauce caught on and today, BBQ is a part of many family celebrations.

This afternoon I dropped by a local bakery to sample a few of their freshly baked "Mooncakes." 

They had quite a nice selection of freshly baked cakes.  This was in contrast to non-bakery stores which offer cartons of cakes, containing 10 to 12 individually wrapped cakes.   A carton of cakes was too many for me, so I went directly to the bakery to choose fresh cakes with the fillings I wanted.

Here are the cakes I purchased. The bakery offered  a number of tasty fillings in the traditional square shaped cake, as seen in the upper left of this photo.

My cakes and their fillings. 

Top left - Lotus seed.  Top right - Red bean with egg.  Center - Green bean.
How ever you might celebrate autumn, I hope you have a chance to experience a Mooncake.


1 comment:

Audrey Deng said...

I love the one "Top right - Red bean with egg."

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival~

Audrey Deng