The upcoming Mid-Autumn Festival means the time has come to overindulge with sugary, calorie-laden goodies in the shape of Chinese mooncakes. So why not take this time of liberation to load up your plates and head to your bedroom – if you can’t eat in bed guilt-free at this time of year, when can you? Since this might be your first time eating such a scrummy treat in an area normally off limits for snacking, we’ve put together this step-by-step guide to help you – and your bed - survive in one piece!
Step One – Choose your weapon
Everyone’s opinion on the best mooncake differs, so it’s just a matter of buying your favorite mooncake for yourself and assuming the rest of your party will have made provision for themselves! For those with posher tastes, Mandarin Oriental and Peninsula offer very popular mooncakes, which are often circulated as corporate gifts in Hong Kong. Another local popular choice is Maxim’s -- very high quality and not nearly as expensive. Here are a few things to consider when choosing your favorite mooncake:
- Egg Custard– A recent favorite. Made with a melting center of creamy custard. Very sweet, absolutely delicious -- but high in cholesterol. Most people have a favorite brand here. It’s hard to go wrong.
- Traditional – Ideal for the non-fussy. Made from a filling of lotus seed paste, with the option to add up to 4 (yes, 4!) egg yolks. This option is the best bet for anyone who has a sweet tooth and wants to follow tradition. The key question here is whether you want to add egg yolks to your mooncake, which will give the center a salty taste.
- Snowy – You might want to pre-book an appointment with your dentist to arrange a few fillings after the inevitable tooth decay that this treat will cause. The snowy mooncake (or snow skin mooncake) has a mochi-like exterior and a jam-like center. Incredibly popular with children. Try local favorite Taipan.
- Ice Cream – Who doesn’t like ice cream in their mooncake? Either be prepared to eat it quickly or bring a bib – a melting mooncake is a big no-no when in bed. Häagen-Dazs offers a popular if slightly expensive version.
- Durian – If your adventurous side makes this your number one choice then be prepared: gas masks for your guests and a fumigator booked for the next day are necessities.
Step Two – Check for a moon outside before you bring one inside
Maybe it’s just an old wives’ tale, or maybe it’s a lunar effect thing, but the rumors are that eating a mooncake at any time other than under a full moon will cause tummy aches. Seriously.
Step Three – Cast your net far and wide
Just like any holiday, Mid-Autumn Festival is best enjoyed with as many friends and family as possible. Given the staggering calorie count, you also need to make sure you have enough people to share your mooncakes. Just be sure you are really close to them, the bed could get quite cozy…..unless someone chose the durian!
Step Four – Divide and conquer
Remember to cut your mooncake into 4 equal size slices. Why? The sugar, fat and calories would be tantamount to a heart attack on a plate! However, if you have a larger family or someone forgot to go shopping, you can – begrudgingly – cut your mooncake into 8. If you can do this without snarling at the smaller portions, just remember your waistline will thank you for it.
Step Five – Prepare your mattress
Let’s be honest, no-one likes crumbs in the bed. While a good bed set-up, such as our BackSupport Mattress™ and, may provide in the event of potential spillage, may we suggest arming yourself with two critical items:
- Your favorite vacuum cleaner – it’s power versus maneuverability here, so might we suggest that a hand-held variety will be quicker and less of a disturbance to yourself and those around you.
- Your hungriest pet – dog, cat, hamster, doesn’t really matter as long as they are hungry. You may want to consider adjusting their food time that day accordingly and if you have multiple candidates, let nature decide and just let them fight it out while you carry on munching.
Step Six – Let your style shine through
This is your chance to show the world how it’s done. Are you a nibbler – working your way from the soft inside to the chewy outside? Do you devour the outside first, leaving the interior to almost melt into your mouth? Or maybe you just swallow it whole? Who cares – just eat it your way!
Step Seven – Lighten the load
Sorry, but it’s time to leave your comfy mattress to finish the festival traditions. Go outside, light a lantern, and walk off all those calories you just consumed!
And don’t wait for next year to repeat this annual tradition. Eat your leftover mooncakes the next day!