Mid-Autumn Festival + Red Bean Box

by Courtney Gould Miller
September 03, 2014

Fall is here, and it’s time again to celebrate the Mid-Autumn festival with mooncakes. This year, I’m savoring the season’s treats thanks to Red Bean Box.  Red Bean Box is a monthly delivery service with the goal of adding Chinese culture to your daily life, a mission that Chinaful shares. August’s box highlights Mid-Autumn festival, going beyond mooncakes to the heart of what this holiday is about–family and sharing food together.

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Upon opening the box, I was greeted with this vivid look into fall in rural Taishan from photographer Richard ‘S’ Lee. The golden fields reminded me of my travels around Guangxi province as well as the gleaming yellow sand in Inner Mongolia.

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Under the photo were many curated treats, each with significance as the informational insert explained. Of course, luxury mooncakes are a must for the Mid-Autumn festival. The box included one lotus seed cake and one red bean cake, both delicious. These cakes are meant to mimic the round moon that appears on the evening of Mid-Autumn festival.

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Special Ginseng Oolong King’s Tea was selected for its sweetness to complement the cakes, which are slightly dry and heavy in texture. Drinking tea with family and friends is an important part of Chinese culture and holidays, and this is an excellent tea for celebrating.

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Fruit candies were chosen to symbolize the fullness of the moon and family harmony, while taro wafers and roasted chestnuts are meant to bring good fortune. I loved learning about the meaning behind each selection, particular taro since I did not know that it is believed to exorcise evil spirits and bring wealth to those who eat it. After sharing my snacks with friends, I quickly felt transported back to fall in Beijing, with the cool air and the bright round moon in the autumn sky.

Thanks to Red Bean Box for the treats. Check them out as a gift for business associates and friends, or for you to learn more about Chinese culture through food (my favorite way to study!) What will you do for Mid-Autumn festival? Send me pictures of your party and you may see them on Chinaful!

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