It’s that time of year again and mooncakes are everywhere in the Asian grocery stores here in San Jose. It makes me a little wistful for Malaysia, as I was making them myself last year when I could easily get my hands on ready-made mooncake fillings. Thankfully, a friend from Singapore visited me just about a week back and brought me some mooncake filling so I will at least get to make some this year.
Last year, besides making traditional baked mooncakes, piggy mooncakes and spiral mooncakes, I decided I was going to give snowskin mooncakes another try to get them more perfect (we weren’t too happy with our first attempt). I also bought a book all about mooncakes called “Mooncake Sonata” by Alan Ooi and the recipes in there really helped me to perfect those snowskin types.
I’m going to share with you one of the snowskin mooncakes that was really popular when I was selling them last year—this pandan custard snowskin mooncake. It is a little bit more complicated to make as there are multiple steps but the cake itself is so pretty and the flavors so yummy that you have to give it a try.
Pandan Custard Snowskin Mooncake
Snowskin Mooncakes, Take 2
The first time I made snowskin mooncakes, the dough was decent but the texture just wasn’t as smooth as what I could find at the stores. I blogged the recipe but I wasn’t fully satisfied with the texture of the mooncake. Last year, after listening to more advice from experts and some trial and error, I found that my snowskin mooncakes turned out better.
The key was to let the dough rest for half an hour after making it and then to re-knead it to get a more pliable and smooth dough and finally to ensure that you have a little bit of cooked rice flour on hand when you are shaping to dust the dough. All of these techniques helped me to develop a much smoother texture and more lovely looking snowskin mooncakes. Also, the recipe that I used had a slightly different ratio of flour to water and icing sugar. I definitely liked this one better.
Pandan Custard Snowskin Mooncake Recipe
adapted from Mooncake Sonata by Alan Ooi
Prep Time: 1 hour, Cook Time: 1 hour
Yield: 8 mooncakes
For the skin:
130g cooked glutinous rice flour (koh fun)
180g icing sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
35g shortening (I prefer Crisco brand)
130ml cold pandan water (see note)
1/4 tsp pandan essence
For the Custard Filling:
1 egg yolk
100g caster sugar
15g super fine flour
20g corn flour
20g tapioca flour
50g thick coconut milk
75g fresh milk
some yellow food coloring
500g pandan lotus seed paste
8 salted egg yolks
1. For the snowskin: Sift ingredients A, then add ingredient B and mix till well combined. Add ingredients C and mix into dough. Knead well to get a smoother dough. (At this point, you can wrap it and let it rest in the fridge.) Divide into 60g each. Roll into balls.
2. Make custard filling: Mix all the ingredients (egg yolk, sugar, flour, corn flour, tapioca flour, coconut milk, milk, butter and coloring) till well combined. Pour the combined ingredients into a steaming tray and steam on medium high heat for 30 minutes. Remove and mix well. Take mixture out and knead until it comes together in a ball. Then roll into a log and cut into 35g portions each. Roll into balls.
3. Prepare the salted egg yolks. Using uncooked salted eggs, separate the whites from the egg yolks. Set aside the whites for another use. Place egg yolks apart on a plate and steam the salted egg yolks for 10 minutes on medium high heat until cooked. Leave to cool.
Steaming Salted Egg Yolks
4. Divide the pandan lotus seed paste into 50g portions. Roll into balls and then flatten.
5. Assemble mooncake: Flatten a piece of custard filling and place one egg yolk in the center. Wrap custard around egg yolk. Roll into a ball. Work slowly and carefully so you do not get any air pockets between the egg yolk and the custard. Repeat with the rest of the egg yolks.
Now, wrap the custard filling with the pandan lotus seed paste ensuring even covering and no air pockets again. This takes practice but once you get it, you will be able to work faster. Roll into ball. Set aside. Repeat with the other fillings.
6. Flatten the snowskin dough and wrap the fillings with the snowskin, trying to get an even coverage. Dust with extra cooked rice flour on the outside part of the skin to get a more smooth texture. Once covered, lightly dust with more flour then press into your mooncake mould (we use the plastic spring-loaded mooncake moulds). De-mould and repeat with the rest of the fillings.
7. Refrigerate the mooncakes overnight before eating. This will help firm up the mooncake and give the snowskin a nice chew. Mooncakes will last about a week in the fridge but is freshest the first three days.
Pandan Custard Snowskin Mooncake
Note: Cold pandan water can be made ahead and kept in the fridge. To make pandan water, boil 4 cups water with 8 pandan leaves (we cut them up into smaller pieces and wash them well before using) for about 10-15 minutes. Strain the water and place in a jar or bottle and let cool. Refrigerate and use as needed. Leftover pandan water makes a refreshing drink with ice.
Yes, making this pandan custard snowskin mooncake it is a lot of work, but the combination of salty egg yolk, coconut-y custard and rich pandan lotus is very nice. The chewy, yet tender skin is the perfect foil for all of the filling.
Wish me luck as I attempt making snowskin mooncakes this year. I don’t have access to Hong Kong cooked glutinous rice flour but I did find a Vietnamese brand one in the stores. Hopefully, they work just as well.
I also had a hard time finding raw salted eggs so Nate and I set out to make our own this year. We started a little late so we will only get to use them later this month. In the meantime, I guess I’ll just have to make the ones without the salted egg yolk.
See expanded pics from this post on our Facebook Fan Page.
Here are some other snowskin mooncake recipes by other bloggers:
Pandan Snow Skin Mooncakes with Coconut Mung Bean Filling by Christine’s Recipes
Mini Snowskin Mooncakes by Happy Home Baking
Snow Skin Lotus Paste Mooncake by Amanda
Basic Mini Snow Skin Mooncake by Anh’s Food Blog
Snow Skin Mooncake by Rasa Malaysia