Gifting mooncakes during Mid-Autumn Festivals is common, but have you considered including Thousand Layer Mooncakes this year? If you aren’t aware of their significance, now is the time to learn. Thousand Layer Mooncakes, also known as Teochew mooncakes which originates from the Chaoshan region in Guangdong, are renowned in the culinary world for their exceptional skill and unique spiral pattern, distinguishing them from other mooncakes with smoother, uniform crusts.
Jade Ng, founder of By Jade bakery who has been baking for 4 years, describes the process as intensive, and meticulous, while simultaneously time-consuming and time sensitive.
“ Traditional mooncakes can be pre-mixed about a month or two prior to completing it. This is because the sugar and oil content are higher, which makes the dough in traditional mooncakes keep longer. For Thousand Layer Mooncakes, you must make it fresh as sugar and oil content is much lower, so it can’t be kept for long periods, ” she says.
“ It’s a process that requires a lot of patience as the dough must rest from 30 minutes up to an hour between each roll, which takes up to 16 hours to complete. Otherwise, you won’t be able to see the individual colour and layers.”
These mooncakes symbolise unity, reunion, and complementarity in Chinese culture. Interestingly, these values resonate with life practitioners in the funeral care industry, who work towards closure and maintaining connections during times of loss. Let’s explore the symbolism behind Thousand Layer Mooncakes and how it aligns with the mission of those in the funeral care industry.
Unity & Reunion Matched with The Art of Closure & Connections
The spiral pattern on Thousand Layer Mooncakes symbolises unity and reunion, mirroring the Chinese cultural values of togetherness. Just as the layers of the mooncake crust blend harmoniously, individuals and families in Chinese culture seek unity, strengthened through the act of sharing mooncakes during festivals which reinforces bonds and emphasise the importance of cherishing moments of togetherness and reconnection with loved ones.
Similarly, life practitioners aim to maintain wholeness within their clients’ families, providing support and guidance during times of grief to bring closure to a life well-lived when a loved one departs. Their services extend beyond the logistics of a funeral to ensure that families can find peace through cherished memories.
Life practitioners recognize the importance of maintaining connections within families, so they work to preserve the memories and legacies of the departed, helping families stay connected to their loved ones even after they’re gone via activities such as Remembrance Services to maintain a family’s sense of wholeness.
Craftmanship Cultivated Through Complementarity
The spiral pattern on Thousand Layer Mooncakes also symbolises complementarity, with distinct yet interconnected layers of dough that contribute unique flavours and textures. Crafting the perfect spiral involves precise craftsmanship, layering thin dough sheets with butter or lard and rolling them into a swirling pattern.
Jade elaborates on the process, stating that “the hands and the room’s temperature must be very cold to make them. Sometimes I need to soak my hands in cold water so that when I fold the thin sheets of dough, the oil coating the sheets won’t leak out, and the layers maintain their clarity. Your hands need to be nimble, soft, and gentle to fold them delicately to avoid tearing the sheets.”
Crafting a Thousand Layer Mooncake demands precision and care, which mirrors life practitioners in their dedication and attention to detail in their respective expertise – be it family care, bereavement care, clinical care, cremation, or counselling. They must work as a team to create a harmonious and wholesome outcome, embodying the integral concept of complementarity in their collective goal to help families navigate loss.
Craftsmanship and Closure
The intricate craftsmanship required to create Thousand Layer Mooncakes is a testament to the dedication and skill of the artisans who make them. Likewise, life practitioners, with their meticulous attention to detail and compassionate approach, strive to provide closure and comfort to grieving families. These professionals understand the importance of honouring a life well-lived and guiding families through the mourning process, helping them find solace and acceptance. In both cases, there is a shared goal of preserving unity and completeness within families, serving as reminders of our interconnectedness and our ability to support one another during times of both celebration and sorrow.