Snowskin Mooncakes Part 2: Making the Dough and the Cakes (Cach Lam Vo Banh)

Beautiful and delicate, these Snowskin Mooncakes are so much fun to make! | recipe from runawayrice.comThis is Part 2 of the recipe for making Snowskin Mooncakes, must-have cakes for the Mid-Autumn Festival.  Last week I posted Snowskin Mooncakes Part 1 which shares the recipes for the Simple Syrup and Taro Root filling.  These delicious mooncakes come in a wide variety of fillings from sweet to savory and traditional to trendy.  The taro root is one of my favorite fillings but there are plenty of other scrumptious options.  So, if there’s another filling you enjoy, by all means, substitute that filling for the taro root.  You can also refer to my earlier Mooncake posts for a Lotus Seed filling and a Red Bean filling.

Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks

Please note you must use roasted or cooked glutinous rice flour.  There are no substitutes for this unique flour.  As this flour is already cooked, no additional cooking is required.  Using glutinous rice flour will not work in this recipe and you will have raw dough that should not be eaten.  The roasted/cooked glutinous rice brand is typically sold right next to the rice flours and glutinous rice flours.  If may be labeled “Cooked Glutinous Rice Flour”, “Roast(ed) Glutinous Rice Flour” or “Glutinous-Fried Rice Flour”.  It has a distinct roasted rice aroma and taste, unlike raw rice flour.  Some of the brands that are available are in the US are:  Coconut Tree, (brand I use in this recipe) and Fortuna.  I use to be able to buy the Cock brand but haven’t been able to find it the markets in recent years.  This brand was my favorite.  (Update:  A special thanks to Amy (who in the comments below) shared with me the store carrying the Cock brand:  AA Marketplace, 13220 Harbor Blvd, Garden Grove, CA 92843.  It’s a really awesome Asian grocery store with tons of products.)

This dough is quite sticky.  When working with it, make sure there’s a thin layer of the cooked glutinous rice flour between the dough and your hands.  Work the dough gently with your hands and avoid squashing your fingers in the dough or they will be incredibly sticky.

The texture and consistency of the dough varies with the brand of cooked glutinous rice flour used.  You’ll need to experiment  to achieve the same dough consistency I showed in the video.  You may have to add more cooked glutinous rice flour or even cut back so sift in the flour gradually.

As you need to use a good amount of the flour in the recipe and then to knead the dough, I recommend sifting an entire package of the flour.  That way it’s ready to go and you don’t have to sift each time the flour is needed.

I do not add oil to my dough.  If the dough is extremely sticky and adding flour leaves it really dry, add 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil and knead it for 1-2 minutes.

If you enjoy the pomelo essence that’s commonly added to these cakes, add about 1/2 teaspoon while kneading the dough.  Go easy on pomelo essence as the fragrance can be overpowering and too much can make the cake bitter.

The below recipe yields approximately 2 pounds or 907 grams of dough.  You can make 9-200 gram cakes having 100 grams of dough and 100 grams of filling per cake.

When all the cakes are made, place them in a cake dish/pan, cover and let rest overnight.  Enjoy these delicious cakes the next day and you’ll be pleased to find the cakes are softer and sweeter after they’ve had time to rest.  The mooncakes can be left unrefrigerated for about 2 days.  After that time, cover and refrigerate.  Allow to warm to room temperature before serving or warm in the microwave on Low power.

Watch the video below for instructions.

Ingredients

2 3/4 cups Simple Syrup
1 3/4 cups roasted/cooked glutinous rice flour + 2/3 cup for rolling, dusting the molds
Taro Root filling (or your choice of filling)

Directions

Pour the simple syrup into a large bowl.  Sift 1/2 cup cooked glutinous rice flour into the simple syrup and stir quickly.  Repeat the process 2 more times making sure to stir vigorously for at least 1 minute with the addition of each 1/2 cup of cooked glutinous rice flour.  Add the remaining 1/4 cup flour and combine well.  Note the dough will be quite thick and sticky.  Let the dough rest on the counter for 30 minutes.

Cover the work surface with a 1/4 cup of sifted cooked glutinous rice flour.  Transfer the dough to the work surface.  Sprinkle the dough with another layer of sifted cooked glutinous rice flour.  Gently roll the dough in the flour coating it well.   Roll the dough into a log.  Fold over the ends and then roll again.  Repeat this process 3 times.  Gently knead the dough a few times.  Do not overwork the dough.  This process should take about 5 minutes.

Cut off a golf ball-sized amount of the dough.  Roll into a ball and allow to rest on the work surface for 5 minutes.  If the ball does not flatten or lose its shape, it’s good and you can continue to making the cakes.  If the ball flattens or loses its shape, add more flour and incorporate into the dough.  Perform the ball test again.

Dust the mooncake molds with the sifted flour and then remove the excess amounts by inverting the mold and tapping it gently with our fingers.

Cut a piece of dough and weigh it to make sure it’s the needed size.  Shaped the dough into a small patty.  Place the filling ball in the center of the dough and then wrap the dough around the filling.  Pinch the dough together to seal.  Gently roll the ball between your palms to smooth out the dough.

Please the cake ball into the mooncake mold with the seams facing upward.  Using your palm, gently press the cake into the molds.  Use your fingers to push the dough to the edges of the mold making sure to fill it completely.

Flip the mold over.  Remove the lid and then tap the sides of the mold to remove the cake.

Dust off the excess flour using a pastry brush and transfer to a plate using an small offet spatula.  These cakes are delicate so move them with care.

Yields: 2 lbs dough, number of cakes varies depending on size of the mooncake molds

To make these pretty and colorful mooncakes, watch the video below.


These Snowskin Mooncakes with a Taro Root filling really pop with just a bit of food coloring! | recipe from runawayrice.com

 

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30 Responses to Snowskin Mooncakes Part 2: Making the Dough and the Cakes (Cach Lam Vo Banh)

  1. Cecilia November 18, 2015 at 7:31 am #

    Helo, are you sure using 1 3/4 cup foto flour ? In the recipe show 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup and finally 1/4 cup.

    • Trang November 18, 2015 at 8:50 pm #

      Hi Cecilia,

      The total roasted/cooked glutinous rice flour is 1 3/4 as per the recipe. Here are the steps 1) Sift 1/2 cup cooked glutinous rice flour into the simple syrup and stir quickly. 2) Sift 1/2 cup cooked glutinous rice flour into the simple syrup and stir quickly. 3) Sift 1/2 cup cooked glutinous rice flour into the simple syrup and stir quickly. 4) Add the remaining 1/4 cup flour and combine well. Hope that helps!

      • Cecilia November 19, 2015 at 4:29 am #

        Thank you!!!

        Cecilia

    • Hannah March 9, 2016 at 6:15 pm #

      can u shows a video how u cook your glutinous rice flour thanks

      • Trang March 15, 2016 at 10:06 pm #

        Hi Hannah,

        It’s very difficult to make it successfully at home so I always buy it.

  2. Anne October 31, 2015 at 9:27 am #

    Hi Chi Trang,

    Amazon sell the Cooked Glutinous Rice Flour? I m not in US 🙂

    Anne

    • Trang November 1, 2015 at 8:41 am #

      Hi Anne,
      Currently, Amazon doesn’t sell cooked glutinous rice flour. I checked Amazon CA and just the glutinous rice is available. Sorry, this is a tough product to find.

  3. Amy September 15, 2015 at 6:10 pm #

    Hi Trang,
    Just curious, why do you like the Cock brand flour. Does it has any advantage over other flour brand in term of texture etc? I try to make the moon cake this year with the Cock brand and it doesn’t seem to turn out quite right. Maybe my flour is a bit old ( no bug , or chemical smell) but doesn’t have a fragrant , roasted rice aroma either and the cake tastes/ smell a bit floury (?)

    • Trang September 20, 2015 at 4:45 pm #

      Hi Amy,

      The Cock brand yields a really smooth texture and I find it doesn’t require as much liquid to be soft and doughy. With other brands, the dough is lumpy. I haven’t had issues with it smelling badly. Maybe try to buy some fresh flour…? The other brands I mentioned in my post, Coconut Tree and Fortuna brands are good too.

  4. KIM January 17, 2015 at 11:37 am #

    You are right this is very labor intensive. I toasted my own flour, because I could only find raw glutinous flour. It fogged up my entire house and made it smell like burnt popcorn. My dough turned out runny and I had to keep adding more flour, I think I ended up using 5 cups of flour. I don’t know what happened, maybe my simple syrup was not cooked down enough, I ended up with 5.5 cups. I had a disaster on my hands and ended up just making dumplings out of them, because I only toasted 3 cups of flour, I had to add raw flour to the mix. There are plant based shortening out there, if the sugar and shortening mix is easier to make. Do you know of a bakery that makes these cakes with quality/healthier ingredients that I can just order?

    I would like to buy a quality steamer that is made with substantial amount of stainless steel that will last for years. Most of the steamers are thin and flimsy. Do you know where I can order such?

    • Trang January 20, 2015 at 7:48 pm #

      Hi Kim,

      This recipe is seemingly simple, but like you, I’ve spent hours upon hours making these cakes…lol! I’ve tried making my own cooked glutinous rice flour without much success. Where do you live Kim? I recently purchased a really nice steamer in Little Saigon, Westminster, CA. I looked online for the same product because I wanted to share it but there are no online sellers currently. Regarding bakeries that make quality cakes with healthier ingredients, I don’t know of any and wish there were some out there as well. 🙂

      • KIM January 21, 2015 at 9:43 am #

        I live in PA. Do you have the phone number for the store and the exact product name/number?, what is the diameter of the steamer?, do you have pictures? Thanks.

        • Trang January 22, 2015 at 1:09 pm #

          Hi Kim,

          Here’s where I bought my steamer: Saigon Supermarket, 10131 Westminster Ave, Garden Grove, CA, Phone: 714.636.5600
          The brand is called: ES
          The dimensions are as follows:
          Diameter: 12.5 inches or 32 cm (they also come in 34 cm and 36 cm)
          Height: including the lid, approximately 14-inches
          Weight: 9 lbs
          Construction: stainless steel
          Price $39.99
          I’ll send you pics via email but you can see the steamer in my video for http://runawayrice.com/desserts/steamed-rice-cakescow-cakessteamed-honeycomb-cakes-banh-bo-hap/
          Hope that helps!

  5. Rosa November 24, 2014 at 9:34 am #

    Where do you buy the molds – orange as well as the white push one?

    • Trang November 29, 2014 at 6:26 pm #

      Hi Rosa, I bought the stamper molds on eBay and the orange molds at the Asian grocery store in Southern California. (The orange molds are available on eBay as well.) If you’re interested I can provide links.

  6. Linh Tran September 11, 2014 at 6:09 pm #

    Trang ơi,
    L đã xem technique last week, nhưng dến hôm nay L mới viết cho Trang đó. Cách pha màu của Trang hay và đễ quá , mà L nghĩ không ra đó. Thank you Trang nha.

    • Trang September 14, 2014 at 9:43 am #

      Cám ơn Chị. Chi lúc nào cũng dễ thương và nhiêt tình.
      Thân chúc Chị và gia đình thật nhiều sức khoẻ và bình an.

  7. Amy September 10, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

    btw, I think the orange mold make better snowskin mooncake than the Plunger mold ( white). The character (hoa van?) on the cake are more distinct and don’t loose it shape after the next couple day like the one make by the plunger mold. ( although is is a bit harder to unmold with the orange mold)

    • Trang September 12, 2014 at 8:56 am #

      Hi Amy,
      Yes, the patterns are cut deeper in the orange molds giving the cake more contrast. They definitely hold up better over time compared with the stamp-style molds. In the past, I’ve coated the molds with a light layer of baking spray and this helps but it does discolor the cake so I would recommend using it for the colored cakes.

  8. Amy September 8, 2014 at 10:57 am #

    have you ever try the technique using shortening and icing sugar to make the snow skin mooncake?

    • Trang September 9, 2014 at 12:33 pm #

      Hi Amy,
      I have made mooncakes with icing sugar and shortening in the past. The dough is less sticky and much easier to work with because of the shortening. The texture is also a lot smoother. My concern is health risks associated with eating shortening. Hope that helps!

      • Amy September 10, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

        Hi Trang. Just curious, how does it taste ? Does it taste the same as the one make with simple syrup? Can shortening be eat raw (make into the cake) . Are you concern about the fat content of the shortening or it is because the shortening are not safe to eat uncooked?

        • Trang September 12, 2014 at 9:05 am #

          Hi Amy,
          I was experimenting with this recipe because I was curious about the texture of the dough more than anything. I took one nibble of the dough and it tasted about the same, just as sweet and pliable but less sticky because of the shortening. (It had a consistency like Play-Doh.) Knowing that it had shortening in it, I couldn’t bring myself to eat it. I know shortening is used in a lot of prepared foods but I don’t make it a habit to cook with it because it is an unnatural oil. I just feel like I am fast-tracking my way to heart disease.

  9. Amy September 8, 2014 at 10:49 am #

    Hi Trang,
    FYI. I don’t know where you live, but if you live in Orange county, there is a market call AA marketplace 13220 Harbor Blvd, Garden Grove, ca 92843, they sell the Wheat starch “Cock” brand. (the one and only place that I see sells that brand)

    • Trang September 9, 2014 at 12:35 pm #

      Hi Amy,
      Thanks so much! I will have to check out this market. I haven’t seen this brand in years. I recently took a trip to the East coast and looked for it there too without luck.

    • Amy September 10, 2014 at 8:07 pm #

      You will like that place. It is huge and have so much variety

      • Trang September 12, 2014 at 8:48 am #

        Hi Amy,
        I am planning a trip so and can’t wait to check it out. I’ve been searching for this brand all over Southern California…lol
        Appreciate your help!

      • Trang October 24, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

        Hi Amy,

        I had a chance to stop by AA Marketplace last weekend and just like you said I found the Cock brand “Wheat Starch”. It seems like I’ve searched all over Southern California for this brand and was so thrilled to have finally found it that I bought 6 bags. It’s a really great store with so many products. Thanks so much for turning me on to this store!

  10. Amy September 4, 2014 at 9:53 pm #

    Hi Trang,
    I wonder what is the shelf life of the flour. They don’t have the expiration date on the package . Would the cake still edible using old flour?

    • Trang September 5, 2014 at 8:30 pm #

      Hi Amy,

      The shelf life of most flours (rice, glutinous rice, tapioca) stored in a pantry is about about 1 year. Check to make sure the flour doesn’t have any of those tiny bugs in it or a funny, chemical smell. This flour should have a fragrant, roasted rice aroma. I’ve had packages of cooked glutinous rice flour that I purchased last year and used this year and they were just fine. Hope that helps!

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