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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Snow Skin moon cake with red bean paste

I was inconsolable. This is my snow skin moon cake debut but I totally messed up. I am just glad I tried this before Mid Autumn Festival so that I can try again.

My first batch of snow skin moon cakes was really forgettable. I had every thing right esp. the taste except for the shape of the end product. In fact, I will need hints as to what it is myself had I not been its maker.

The problem was unshaped red bean paste ( too gooey to start with ) and wrong method of wrapping ( I did it the curry puff way, boo hoo ! ). The nail that sealed the coffin was that the moon cake was too fat for the mould. I am still wondering how to 'process' these horrible batch of knobbly moon cakes ; to eat or to throw.

Before starting on anything else, note that everyone's mould is different.  So, work out the ratio of  snow skin to paste filling before shaping. Also, the filling was be made into a ball first before it is wrapped !

How much dough and how much paste filling :

Prepare the dough first. Get some and fill the cavity of the mould.
The ratio of dough to paste filling is 1 part  : 2 parts.

Here's the maths for my little pink mould ( Phoon Huat, pink, 4 patterns, $ 3.90 )
The dough that filled the mould cavity is 42 g.
So, to make a moon cake that fits the mould, you will need 14g dough and 28 g paste filling.

A word of credit; I have to thank hubby for reworking on the red bean paste to make it drier and  more manageabl. He looked like a wizard stirring the vat of red bean over the stove :-)
 Also , thanks to thebakerswhocook at blogspot for unraveling some of the mysteries of moon cake baking.

Adapted from thebakerwhocooks.

Skin :

70 Hong Kong Flour (steam for 15 min , covered. Leave to cool. Sift twice )
70 cooked glutinous rice flour or koufen
105 g icing sugar
1/2  tablespoon shortening ( I used Ghee )
5  tablespoons cold water* ( approx )
1 T Hong Kong Flour (mix with 1 T hot water to form hot dough.  Use a fork and stir in a bowl. )

Red bean paste, rolled into little balls. oil hands to make this easier.

Sieve glutinous flour , Hong Kong flour, icing sugar. Add shortening, rub until crumbles form.
Add cold water, stirring constantly with a  fork. Knead.
Add hot dough. Knead until combined dough is smooth ( I added purple coloring to make streaks at this stage )
Rest 10 min in the fridge.

Tick tock, tick tock …

Measure out dough. Dust work surface with koufen.
Flatten to disc, edges thinner than center.
Put filling at the center of disc.
Gather edges of dough , just like how the Dimsum master does to his  Xiaolongbao, to wrap filling.
Pinch to seal edges.
Dust smooth surface with koufen or HK  flour.
Press into mould, dusted side on mould.
Knock out cake from mould, catching with your hand.
Brush off excess flour gently.

 Chill until firm. Serve. Keeps for 4 days.

Verdict : I did the first batch with only koufen for skin, which is very fragrant but too brittle to handle. This concoction ( koufen + HK flour ) is not as fragrant but pliable, which means the skin can be made very very thin without tearing. For a blind test, pure koufen skin actually tastes better.

Pictures : coming up..

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