Lavender Moon…

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival (中秋節) also known as the Mooncake Festival to one and all. According to the Chinese lunar calendar, this festival falls on this day in the year.

One legend has it that a hero named Yi, a sharpshooter, lived with his wife, Chang’er. It so happened that in a certain year, ten suns rose simultaneously in the sky and this led to all kinds of disasters everywhere. Yi shot down all of them except one, leaving it for the purpose of providing light. An immortal was impressed and gave Yi an elixir that would make him immortal but he did not want to become immortal without his wife , so he let her keep it. But one of Yi’s apprentices got to know of this and on this date, when Yi was away hunting, he went to see Chang’er to try and get it from her. Chang’er refused. She swallowed it and instantly she was able to fly skywards. Because of her love for Yi,  she opted to reside in the moon to be near him. When Yi came back, he found out what had transpired in his absence and he felt so heartbroken. He presented offerings to his wife and the people then felt sorry for them and started to do the same.

I did not know of this legend but when I was small, I did read about how, once in China, under the oppression of Mongol rule, the people planned to overthrow their rulers. If I’m not mistaken, I came across this story in the Dolphin, a magazine for young students published by the Borneo Literature Bureau in Sarawak, selling for 20-30 cents way back then. Every household at the time had to serve and feed a Mongol who stayed with them in their houses. They inserted messages into moon cakes to inform everyone of the rebellion. The message read, “Kill the Mongol in the house on the 15th of the 8th lunar month,” and the people did accordingly and managed to drive the Mongols out of China. This led to the founding of the Ming Dynasty, 明朝, in 1368.

Whatever the story may be, this is a Chinese tradition that has been around like forever and ever since I was small, I would look forward to this time of year to be able to enjoy our Foochow mooncake biscuits…

Pek quek peah
*Archive photo*

…and of course, the mooncakes…

Mooncake
*Archive photo*

…as well.

Unfortunately, the prices have been increasing and this year is no exception so feasting on these would be out of the question. However, I would still buy some and enjoy a bit for no other reason than to uphold and preserve the age-old tradition.

This year, I received a box of them, Lavender’s no less…

Lavender 1

…from my sweet and generous friend, Annie in KL.

As a matter of fact, she also sent me a box from this same bakery last year…

Lavender's mooncakes 2013
*Archive photo*

This bakery, that has an outlet at Mid Valley in KL, has very high standards as far as their products are concerned…

Lavender 2

I have tried their layer cake before…

Lavender's layer cake
*Archive photo*

…and needless to say, they were indeed very good.

This being a scheduled post, at the time of writing, I have not cut any to enjoy yet…

Lavender mooncakes 2014

…but when I finally get down to it, hopefully, I will remember to take some photographs to share in a later post.

In the meantime, I do hope you will all enjoy eating yours at your end. Any grand dinner planned for tonight?

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

33 thoughts on “Lavender Moon…”

  1. Having instant ramen brought back from Hokkaido tonight (gonna expire real soon). No grand dinner sadly ;( Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to you and your family 🙂

    Same to you? Expiring soon. Hmmmm….you could have sent that to me and it would be gone in no time at all. 😉 😉 Hehehehehehe!!!!

  2. Lavender bistro and pastry is everywhere in JB. In fact, the Headquarters is in JB. I like their less sugar moon cakes which comes in white lotus paste.

    Oh? So it’s a Johore franchise? Bet they make tons from the people carting their SIN$ across the Causeway. I saw Baker’s Cottage the other day – low sugar with single yolk – over RM16.00 each, more expensive than the usual. I thought since they’re using less sugar, they should cost less…or at least, the same. More often than not, they’re not less sweet though – some people say they use artificial sweeteners…and that is in no way cheap.

  3. Happy Mooncake Festival to you & family.. Every year MIL will do it a few days earlier, usually Saturday so that everyone can come back for dinner.. There will be white cut chicken, braised fatty pork, prawns, soup and of coz some greens.. Yummzzz.. Ooohh my legend version different from yours.. Mine has something to do with the dragon.. Something like yours, insert messages into mooncakes and kill the dragon, something like that, teehee..

    Same to you and yours. Wahhhh…so many variations to the story.

    Yes, we had ours on Saturday too as Melissa would be away in her jungle school on the day – watch out for the post on it.

  4. Happy Mooncake Festival to you!! For me is the same! Don’t have much different…just like normal day to family, not much celebration!! =]

    Same to you. Not even eating mooncakes to uphold and preserve our age-old Chinese tradition?

  5. I didn’t realize it was today until my mom called. She said she will wait until I go back to cook the “feast”. That means this coming weekend 😉 . Supposed to have dinner with a bunch of “outstation” friends today.
    Happy Mid Autumns Day to you and your family!

    Same to you and yours. We had ours in advance on Saturday as my girl would be home then. Have a great dinner with your friends…and at home coming weekend.

  6. What a coincidence? I also received a box of Lavender mooncakes as a gift from my daughter too. They are so nice and best part is they are low sugar mooncakes. Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to you & family.

    Yes, my father loved it, said it wasn’t really sweet like most of the rest. Same to you and yours.

  7. It’s just an ordinary day for me today. I think I have only eaten one mooncake so far. It’s the snowskin one with yam paste. It was just OK. I still prefer the old fashioned ones. I don’t see anything special about snowskin mooncakes.

    Me too. I can’t understand why many prefer those…much less those agar-agar jelly ones. To each his own, I guess. Different people have different tastes.

  8. Had a chance to try their kek lapis, and they’re good but I still prefer Dayang Salhah. Much more buttery IMO. Interesting you posted this today. I just finished my Dayang Salhah kek lapis tonight, which I bought with you many moons ago in Kuching. A little stale but still very delicious!

    It’s the Mooncake Festival today and since I was talking about their mooncakes, I just slotted the kek lapis in as well. I think theirs are baked – our Sarawak ones are steamed…not too sure. My missus used to make – steamed first and then baked so not so damp and would not spoil easily. Of course, hers would not have so many layers, if you catch the drift and in fact, the following year, there was only one layer – same recipe, just one layer. 😀

    1. One layer layer kek. Why not. It’s the flavor that counts. I think the Dayang S keks are baked.

      Maybe. The baked ones will definitely last longer. It’s the dampness from the steaming that may cause it to go moldy sooner.

  9. Happy mid autum festival to you and your family.

    Ya now mooncake very pricey. one biji already nearly rm20.

    Same to you, SWK & J. Yes, too expensive…and good in a way, so cannot eat too many. Hehehehehe!!!!

  10. Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to you & family. Guess they have started ‘WhatsApp’ back in the olden days in 1368, oh one more thing you forgot to mention the time, guess it would be midnite or 3:30am haha.

    Same to you and Mango. Ya…they had their ways and means of communicating and very efficient too, eh?

  11. The MGB ‘Mongol Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti’ discovered the note much earlier but it was encrypted..and the explanation was ‘its a secret recipe’ lolz..

    Ok…ok…whatever that means. That’s Russian-derived, I guess. Me, dinosaur. 😛

  12. No wonder so many eatery shops not opened today when we went out early this morning… This evening I have a dinner in church.. Senior Fellowship.. yes, I am very senior now in terms of age.. hahaha… so we will have a pot bless party and singing as usual.. 🙂

    I can imagine “Tina Turner” in action… Muahahahahaha!!!!!

  13. Happy mid autumn festival to you and your family.
    Haven’t tried Lavendar’s mooncake before but I like their cranberry and raisin scones. Yes, mooncakes getting pricier each year. The only reason I bought more than a couple this year was because there was a 30% discount. 😉

    Same to you and yours. I wonder why they would want to tag their prices so high and then over huge discounts. Probably another one of their gimmicks. People can’t resist sales bargains. I’d probably go around tomorrow to see if there are any on special offer – past the day already.

  14. Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to you and your family buddy! 🙂

    I’ve always like the legend behind it – but the one I heard is a bit different. There are a lot of variations floating around. This one is where the Yi shoots down 9 of the suns and was hailed as a hero but eventually he grew obsessed with finding the elixir and wanted it for himself. His wife, knowing that he has become corrupted during his reign and was not a good ruler anymore, decided not to give it to him the elixir and swallowed it herself to safe the world from her (now evil) husband.

    There’s good and evil in the story and themes of good people eventually becoming evil (absolute power corrupts absolutely, or in a lesser sense, some people just can’t handle a little bit without changing).

    This was the version I originally was told by my grandparents but never heard it again and I thought that was strange but it came out in the in-flight magazine of AirAsia this month, saw it when I flew back, so it’s not my imagination – the darker story does exist.

    It’s like how the original Grimm Brothers stories were all very twisted and realistic (with a lot of evil and regular people with all their flaws) but storybook and eventually Disney changed them all to become easy-to-digest nice stories without any of the nastiness.

    Same to you and your loved ones. Gee!!! Sounds like one of Tim Burton’s scripts… 😀 I think I would prefer the romantic version, sentimental old fool that I am. I love Roald Dahl’s parodies of those children’s tales though. 😀 😀 😀

    1. Oh yeah, I love Roald Dahl too! He was one of my favorite authors as a kid, I remember you lending one of his books to me when I was small too and my mom asking if it had any “adult content” coz he was well known for his risqué writings in some of his compilations! 😉

      It was the other way round. You borrowed Revolting Rhymes from Needler…and I took it from you to photocopy using the school’s photostating machine. Your mum was grumbling away – she must be thinking I was such a bad influence. 😀

  15. Happy Mid-Autumn festival to you and family.Certainly have been eating lots of mooncakes previous year and this year is not an exceptional. I haven’t get to try Lavender mooncake but I always love their breads and pastries. I didn’t know they sell kek lapis too but nvm we both eating your kek kapis, the blueberry and hati parek.

    No grand dinner since we already ate too much last night. Tonight will be a peaceful night.

    In advance, also the same. Enjoy the kek lapis!

  16. Oh is it today? Alamak… I don’t remember 😉
    Not sure if that’s the same Lavender we have in Johore.
    I prefer ice cream mooncakes, to be honest.

    Ya, no celebration there, I guess, unless you venture into Chinatown. According to Chris Au, Lavender’s a Johore franchise. I didn’t know that.

    Saw somebody sharing photographs of ice cream mooncakes on Facebook, Häagen-Dazs no less. Never tried that. Must be so very expensive. 😦

  17. Happy Mid-Autumn festival to you, Melissa and Lucy!!

    Oh, i didn’t know, this year and last year i bought you the same mooncake, just the size different. :P:P. Hope you like it.

    We will have a ‘small celebration” at home, actually every year the same, must eat moon cake and kids must play lanterns and adults will be eating, chatting and drink tea. :S:S

    Same to you and all in your family. So nice to have large families, especially on occasions like this, very happening. Ya, everything is on permanent record in my blog – will go down in history. Thanks again. 😀

  18. Happy Mid Autumn Festival to you!

    Thanks. Lovely blog you have – I will need the translation though. Everything looks great, will goa nd browse when I’m free. Thanks for dropping by.

  19. These cakes look amazing – I am drooling over the layer cake! Happy Mooncake Festival 🙂

    Very nice. Very well-known bakery in the country but of course, the things there do not come cheap. 😉

  20. hope you’re having/had a good mid-autumn dinner (looking forward to reading about it!). my family doesn’t celebrate it (not sure why, but we never did), so no mooncakes for me today, heheh 🙂

    We had it in advance on Saturday – post coming soon.

  21. These cakes look delectable.

    They’re good. Hmmmm…your first time here, I see. Welcome, welcome…and thanks for commenting. Do come again.

  22. Happy Mooncake Festival! What a lovely legend. I never heard the legend behind the festival. 😊

    Like in those old Chinese or even Malay movies – I saw Jula Juli Bintang Tiga and Jula Juli Bintang Tujuh. Maybe your mum did too. Hehehehehehe!!!! We, old people.

  23. Festivals are FUN – I blogged about it today – in brief – at a winery. I may be attending an apple festival at the end of the month, too!

    I don’t think there’s any more Chinese ones till December.

  24. You are so blessed Arthur. I havent tried the mooncakes from Lavender. Must remember to try them next year 🙂

    I am indeed. Only got one friend sending me this year though but count my blessings – at least no overdose of sugar intake. 😉

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at sibutuapui@yahoo.com

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