Mid-Autumn Festival is coming! Having tried my hand at making snow skin mooncakes last year, I decided to try out more this year using new recipes and flavour combinations. I'm not a fan of snow skin mooncakes (still prefer my traditional baked ones with just plain red bean paste), but I love making them as the flavour-mix are endless!
To save time from shaping the bunnies and piggies this year, I bought a set of 50g moulds (4 stamps) and a set of 25g moulds (6 stamps) from eBay at USD 9.99 (about SGD 12.50). Not sure if they are cheaper than those sold in baking stores (I'd like to think so), but there are a lot more varieties to choose from on eBay. Do note that if you are buying from eBay, it will take about 3 weeks to be shipped here to Singapore!
Now for the mooncake components! There are 3 components in the mooncake: the skin, the filling and the truffle center at the ratio of 20:15:10 in grams for a 50-gram mooncake.
The truffle center is made simply by mixing a little salt, cream and Baileys into melted chocolate. The truffle mix is then chilled then divided into 10-gram pieces. I used Margaret River's dark chocolate but any good-quality chocolate will do. You can use a mix of dark and semi-sweet or even white chocolate to show off the colour contrast against the chocolate filling (but I won't do that because white chocolate will make the overall mooncake sweeter).
The filling is made by mixing melted dark chocolate into the lotus paste and melon seeds are added for the crunch. I've read from Sherlyn's blog that by the paste is a bit dry with the addition of chocolate, so I also added a tablespoon of Baileys though the Baileys wasn't very noticeable. I didn't dare to add too much for fear that the paste will be too soft. I used a no-sugar lotus paste that I bought from Sunlik (a little more expensive than regular lotus paste), and I found the sweetness just right.
The snow skin is made by mixing cooked glutinous rice flour, icing sugar, cocoa powder, butter (in place of shortening), Baileys and ice cream soda together. I know I know - ice cream soda?! That was from a recipe I adapted from Aunty Yochana which many people have tried and vouched that the skin stay soft even after several days! I have made a batch of mooncakes with plain white lotus paste (follow me on Instagram @foodiebaker to see them!) and I purposely kept one to experiment and yes, even after 3 days, the skin is still quite soft! The recipe I used last last year hardened after 3 days in the fridge, so I'm glad I found a keeper!
Verdict? This was an absolutely chocolatey mooncake that so far everyone loved (except for those non-chocoholics)! The mooncakes have just the right amount of sweetness with a very slight hint of Baileys. I will try increasing the amount of Baileys the next time (which is most likely for next year's attempt... haha!)
Here are the step-by-step photos on the mooncake making!
|1) Melt chocolate and whisk in salt.||2) Whisk in cream.|
|3) Whisk in Baileys.||4) Refrigerate until firm.|
|5) Divide into 10-gram pieces and refrigerate till firm.||6) Melt chocolate and mix in lotus seed paste.|
|7) More Baileys go in for the fun.||8) Don't forget some melon seeds for the crunch!|
|9) Divide and roll into balls.||10) Flatten and wrap a truffle inside. Chill until firm.|
|11) Sift the snow skin dry ingredients together||12) Rub butter / shortening in.|
|13) More Baileys!!||14) Pop a can of ice cream soda.|
|15) Add into the mixture.||16) Knead into a smooth dough.|
|17) Wrap, wrap, wrap!||18) Finally, stamp with your desired mould.|
Before I go into the full recipe, I'm linking this recipe to: A Bouquet of Talent #51; All My Bloggy Friends #62; See Ya in the Gumbo #98; Share it Link Party #38; Share It One More Time Party; and Thursdays Treasures #102!
- 140 grams dark chocolate, chopped
- Pinch of salt
- 1½ tablespoons Baileys
- 1½ tablespoons heavy cream
- 55 grams dark chocolate, chopped
- 270 grams no-sugar white lotus paste
- 1 tablespoon Baileys
- 20 grams melon seeds, toasted
- 90 grams kou fen / cooked glutinous rice flour
- 40 grams icing sugar
- 5 grams cocoa powder
- 40 grams cold butter / shortening, chopped
- 50 ml Baileys, chilled
- 150 ml ice cream soda / Sprite / 7-Up, chilled
- Truffle: Melt the chocolate using a double boiler or a microwave. Whisk in the salt, followed by Baileys and lastly cream. Cover with plastic wrap and chill until firm, 30-minutes to 1 hour. Divide into 10-gram pieces, roll into small balls and refrigerate until firm, about 30-minutes to 1 hour.
- Filling: Melt the chocolate using a double boiler or a microwave. Let cool for 5 minutes. Add in the lotus paste and mix well until the chocolate has been fully incorporated. Add in Baileys, followed by melon seeds. Divide into 20-gram pieces and roll into balls. Take one ball, flatten it slightly then wrap a piece of truffle inside. Roll it into a ball again and repeat. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Skin: Sift the kou fen, icing sugar and cocoa powder into a large mixing bowl. Add in cold butter and rub it in with your finger tips until small lumps of butter remain. Add in Baileys and ice cream soda and mix to form a soft dough. Knead the dough in the mixing bowl until smooth. Divide into 20-gram pieces and cover with a plastic wrap or tea towel when not in use.
- Moulding: Dust your hand with cocoa powder. Take a portion of the skin, flatten it, and wrap the filling inside. Dust your mould with more cocoa powder and place the mooncake inside. Stamp it and push it out onto a tray. Once all the mooncakes have been shaped, place the tray of mooncakes in the refrigerator to firm up a little, about 15 to 30 minutes, so that they don't go out of shape when transferred into boxes.
- Storage: Transfer the mooncakes into an air-tight container. Place a paper towel over the top before replacing the lid to prevent water from forming on top of the lid and dripping back onto the mooncakes. Refrigerate the mooncakes at least 6 hours or overnight before serving. The mooncakes can keep for up to 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator before the skin starts to dry out. The mooncakes are best served chilled with a cup of hot Chinese tea.
- I yielded 14 50-gram mooncakes and 6 mini 25-gram mooncakes (without truffle filling) from the original recipe. I have tweaked the recipe so that you will get about 16 to 17 50-gram mooncakes if you use the following ratio for skin : filling : truffle = 20 grams : 20 grams : 10 grams. You might still end up with a few extra truffle or filling, but those can easily disappear by popping them in your mouth!
- Try to get a digital weighing machine when making mooncakes. The ratio is very important when you make the mooncakes, if you don't have enough skin, you might end up tearing the mooncake skin when wrapping it.
- I find it easier to wrap the mooncakes when the filling is cold, but when the filling is cold, it wouldn't be easy to stamp them and shape them. So what I do is I wrap all the mooncakes first, and by the time I finish wrapping, the mooncakes will be at room temperature and ready to be stamped / shaped.
- To toast the melon seeds, spread the melon seeds in a single layer on a baking tray. Stick the tray into a preheated 170 degrees Celsius oven for 5 to 8 minutes, stirring once halfway until fragrant and very lightly browned. Let cool completely before using.
- Kou fen is cooked glutinous rice flour. You can get it from bakery stores as grocery stores don't really stock them. If you want to make your own kou fen, spread an even layer of glutinous rice flour on a baking tray. Microwave for 2 minutes on high till the flour is heated through. Alternatively, fry the flour in a non-stick frying pan until heated through. When tasted, the flour should not have any flour taste. Let cool completely before using.
I chilled the Baileys and ice cream soda before adding into the dry ingredients because the dough is less sticky when cold. I also wore gloves when kneading the dough so that it doesn't stick to my hands. As the dough gets warmer, it tends to stick, so do remember to dust your hands.
- Water droplets tend to form on the top of the plastic container, and when you open the lid, these water droplets may fall back onto the mooncakes, making your mooncakes wet. So placing a paper towel over the top will help prevent your mooncakes from getting wet.
- Make in Advance: Make the truffle and filling first. Wrap the truffle with the filling then place them on a tray, slightly apart from one another. Freeze for 1 to 2 hours until firm. Transfer the filling-truffle into a plastic wrap or a container and freeze for up to 2 weeks. Let them defrost in the refrigerator overnight before using them.