Mooncakes 月饼

月饼是中国的一种有馅的饼。在中秋节吃月饼是中国的一种传统。从历史上来说,中秋节就是对月亮的敬爱和欣赏。月饼已经成为中秋佳节的一个部分。

中秋节在中国人中是一个除了春节和冬至以外的一个很重要的节日,而且在远东地区不少国家都把中秋节定为国定假日。 通常,在中秋节一家人会团聚在一起,一边庆祝秋收,一边赏月、吃月饼和柚子。根据不同地区的习惯,庆祝中秋的方式方法也不经相同,有的是:

  •          在楼里点上灯笼,也在水里漂灯笼;
  •          中秋节也是植树节;
  •          收集蒲公英的叶子,然后把收集到的与家里的人平分;
  •          舞龙灯;
  •          在台湾,自从上世纪八十年代起,人们在中秋节期到户外烤肉,以此来庆祝中秋。

而中秋节的日期是在中国日历里的八月十五日,也就是在西方日历的九月的后半个月到十月的前半个月之间。农民们也在这个时候庆祝夏收的丰实成果。中秋离秋分季节很近,人们认为这个时候的月亮最亮、最园。

传统的月饼是有一个直径大约约10公分,高度约为5公分圆型的,也有方形的。与西方国家里的饼比较,月饼就显得比较厚,比较重,而且比较扎实。月饼的餡常常是用莲蓉和咸鸭蛋黄 做成的。人们也常常一边吃月饼一边品茶。

传统的月饼上面有印花,也印有中文字。这些字常常是表示长寿和和睦,边上也印有花纹。月饼里的咸鸭蛋黄表示满月。现在人们基本都到商店里去买做好了的月饼;尽管如此,还是有人在家里自己做月饼。所有的月饼的价格并不是统一的。不同的厂商做的月饼价格不同,不同的餡的月饼价格也不一样。人们在亚洲市场里可以找到便宜的月饼,也可以找到昂贵的月饼。通常月饼是装成四个一盒。

月饼的品种在中国各地也不尽相同。人们用不同的食品料、不同的方式来做月饼。在中国有月饼的制作比赛,人们也开始做果冻月饼。虽然做月饼的菜谱里也出现了五光十色的变化,但是传统做法的月饼还是在亲友中最受欢迎的。


讨论问题:

1.  当你读完这篇文章以后,你有什么感想和问题?

2.  请告诉我们你和你家人是如何庆祝中秋节的?

3.  如果你愿意告诉我们哪一个节日是你最喜欢的,也请告诉我们为什么你最喜欢那个节日。



Mooncakes are Chinese pastries.  They are eaten during the Mid – Autumn Festival.  Historically, this festival is for lunar worship and moon watching.  Mooncakes are considered an integral part of the Mid–Autumn Festival.

The Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the few important holidays in the Chinese calendar, the others being Chinese New Year and Winter Solstice, and is a legal holiday in several countries. Traditionally on this day, Chinese family members and friends will gather to admire the bright mid-autumn harvest moon, and eat moon cakes and pomelos under the moon together. Accompanying the celebration, there are additional cultural or regional customs, such as:

                       Carrying brightly lit lanterns, lighting lanterns on towers, floating sky lanterns

                       Planting Mid-Autumn trees

                       Collecting dandelion leaves and distributing them evenly among family members

                       Fire Dragon Dances

                       In Taiwan, since the 1980s, barbecuing meat outdoors has become a widespread way to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival.

The Mooncake 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.  Farmers celebrate the end of the summer harvesting season on this date. It is a date that parallels the autumnal equinox of the solar calendar, when the moon is supposedly at its fullest and roundest.

Traditionally, mooncakes are round or rectangular in shape, measuring around 10 cm in diameter and 5 cm in thickness. Compared with other pastries in western countries, mooncakes are thick, heavy and dense. The filling of a mooncake is made from lotus seed paste and yolk of salted duck eggs. Mooncakes are usually eaten with Chinese tea.

Traditional mooncakes have an imprint on their surface. This imprint is in the Chinese language, and it usually means longevity and harmony. Aside from this, there are extra designs imprinted on mooncakes as well. The salted duck egg used in the mooncake for filling symbolizes full moon. Nowadays the general public gets mooncakes from bakeries. Nonetheless, there are people who prepare them at home. There isn’t a stated price for mooncakes.  It depends on the bakery and ingredients used.  One can find both low cost and very costly mooncakes in Asian supermarkets.  Normally, mooncakes are packed in a package of four.

Mooncakes come in different styles in different parts of China.  Various ingredients and ways are used to prepare mooncakes.  People have even started making jelly mooncakes. Despite the wide variations seen in recipes of mooncakes,   people still tend to settle for the traditional mooncakes. 


Discussion Questions:

1.  Do you have any questions or comments about what you have read in this article?
2.  Describe how you or your family celebrate Mid Autumn Festival.
3.  If you have to name one favorite festival, which festival is it, and why is it your favorite?

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