One of Anna Grace's favorite books is Thanking the Moon: Celebrating the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival.
She loves reading about how a Chinese family celebrates by eating a picnic under a full moon with brightly light Chinese lanterns.
The official date for the Chinese Moon Festival is today, but we celebrated over the weekend since Alex has soccer games on Monday nights.
Last year we celebrated while we watched football on TV, so we continued with the tradition this year. We ate our normal "football finger foods," but we added in some Chinese treats.
Before the football game started, Anna Grace and I drove to the large Asian grocery store about an hour away in search of Chinese moon cakes which, according the book, are eaten during the Moon Festival. Last year we settled for the Southern favorite "moon pies," but I am trying very hard to learn more about Chinese traditions and cultures, and I was determined to find real Chinese moon cakes.
After walking around the store for about 30 minutes without any luck, I started asking shoppers and employees if they knew what a moon cake was. My problem was that I do not read the Chinese labels, and I had no idea what I was looking for. The store is huge and has aisles and aisles of foods that I have never seen anywhere else. Who knew there were so many kinds of soy sauce? This place is nothing like Publix! I must have asked at least 10 people before someone in customer service finally pointed me in the right direction. We ended up finding what we were looking for before we headed home. During our search, we also found Anna Grace's favorite Chinese yogurt drinks, little cups of Chinese fruit "jello" that the boys love, Asian pears, and more of Anna Grace's favorite steamed buns.
Unfortunately after all of that work, no one except Anna Grace liked the moon cakes. It seems that there are different flavors of the filling in the centers and we ended up with a red bean paste filling- not exactly what we were expecting to find inside of a cake!!
Each time I go to the Asian grocery store we find a new adventure. It does not seem common for a white woman to be walking around the store with a beautiful Chinese girl. We get lots of stares!! During our search for moon cakes we were offered fish soup (not yummy!) and oyster balls and got shooed away from the Korean bakery section for asking about Chinese moon cakes.
Wow!! It's been a long time.
2 years ago