A Tasty Recipe for Revolution

By Marc Checkley
Updated: 2007-09-25 11:03

How a mooncake is packaged is as much a feature as the cakes themselves. Flashy metallic cardboard and embossed tins of Chang Er wrapped in ribbons are just some examples of how the cakes are dressed.

There is growing concern the refuse created by the festival is adding to China's ever-growing pollution problem. This year in an effort to bring a green element to Zhong Qiu Jie, more than 40 manufacturers in Beijing are wrapping their cakes in recycled paper and paper containers. This follows a municipal government campaign launched in August to sell mooncakes in simple cost-effective packaging.

The mooncake festival has indeed stood the test of time. From its ancient origins in folklore and legend, it is still a highly anticipated event in the lunar calendar year. Today's mooncakes have moved and moulded with the times but the festival's message of togetherness still holds true for many Chinese no matter where they call home.

"Mooncakes have a very special meaning for all Chinese," says Cecilia Lui. "I think the different flavours of today's cakes show the diverse palates of Chinese today."

Tales like Chang Er and Zhu Yuanzhang's cunning rebellion continue to enchant young and old and these in many ways are the best ingredients of any festival. Stories passed down through millennia, which change with the times and remind us of times gone by, when a mooncake had the power to overthrow the largest empire the world has ever known.

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