Enjoying food that’s freshly made from your own kitchen provides a lot of satisfaction, especially when you see your hard work bear fruits. Kids will surely feel the same way about it!
Spending quality time in the kitchen with your kids is a valuable bonding experience. Besides introducing them to the basics of baking and cooking, you’ll also get to know them better.
This year’s Mid-Autumn Festival is just around the corner, and it’s the right time to start making some mooncakes, whether for the experience, or for gifting to family and friends.
While making mooncakes might seem like a daunting task, they are actually quite simple (and fun!) to do. If you’re thinking of making mooncakes from scratch this year, rope in your little ones and have a fun-filled afternoon together.
Baking with kids is very different from doing it on your own; there are some things worth considering before getting started. Here are some of our tips on how you can elevate the mooncake-making experience for your little ones, and make it as mess-free as possible!
10 Essential Tips for Making Mooncakes with Your Kids
1. Prepare all the tools needed beforehand.
Make sure all tools are within arm’s reach when you’re baking with kids. You’ll need to keep an eye on them, and there won’t be much chance to look for the tools lacking.
Getting all tools ready before you start is also a great opportunity to familiarise kids with them. Introduce each tool, starting from the basic ones like spatula and whisk. The more your kids get to know baking tools and ingredients, it’ll be easier for you to guide them the next time they bake!
2. Safety first!
Making snow skin mooncakes is a very kid-friendly project. You don’t need to use the mixer or oven, which can be quite dangerous for the little ones when they operate.
However, you need to use a knife to divide the filling paste into portions. Chopping up fruits, nuts, or other mix-ins using a knife is also inevitable. To avoid kitchen accidents, refrain from letting kids do this step.
If the little ones are begging to get more involved, use a bench scraper to cut the paste and portion out the snow skin dough. It’s made of lightweight plastic and sharp enough to cut soft ingredients but not your little one, so it’s just the right tool to help you out!
3. Pre-measure the ingredients.
Weighing ingredients and measuring them, even using measuring spoons, might be challenging for the younger ones. And one thing is for sure—it’ll be way messier than doing it yourself.
If you’re working on a mooncake recipe from scratch, weigh and measure every ingredient before starting. When everything’s ready, kids can mix them right away. The entire process will be much more enjoyable for everyone!
All of our mooncake kits come with pre-weighed ingredients, which will save you time and trouble. There are five delicious flavour combinations, including one with a local twist: the Ondeh Ondeh Snow Skin Mooncake. Discover the fun of making snow skin mooncakes with these convenient baking kits!
4. Guide kids throughout the process.
When many of us first start learning to bake/cook, it might be challenging trying to understand what all the different visual and sensory cues mean.
Is the dough elastic enough to pass the windowpane test, and are the ingredients well distributed? And what’s a “shaggy dough” anyway?
You might be quite familiar with these terms right now, but the little ones still have no clue. Moreover, it’s not possible to make them read the recipe by themselves.
To avoid getting lost while baking, especially with your little ones around, read your mooncake recipe thoroughly before starting. Understand what should be done in each step and when to do it.
It’s even better if you can lead by example, and let kids copy what you’re doing. That way, it’ll be easier for kids to make their first snow skin mooncakes.
If you’re not feeling too confident with your own baking skills, check out these tutorial videos on key techniques. You can find links to relevant tutorial videos in every mooncake kit, which will help you to figure out how to execute each step properly, including how to knead the dough!
5. Wear disposable gloves.
Making snow skin mooncakes involves a lot of sticky ingredients. Dough made from Gao Fen and the lotus paste filling can end up sticking to your hands and working surface quite easily.
To avoid getting these ingredients everywhere, wear disposable gloves to protect your hands. This will be beneficial for the kids too, to reduce the mess and any dirty hands. Once you’re done, you can throw the gloves right away. No extra cleanup needed!
We provide disposable gloves in our mooncake kits, so you won’t need to buy any on your own. (Although it’s a good idea to stock up if you often bake with kids!)
6. Use a bench scraper for kneading.
Compared to bread dough, snow skin dough is way stickier. Attempting to hand-knead all the way through is possible, but slightly trickier, especially if you haven’t kneaded dough before.
Besides being a safer alternative for cutting the dough, a bench scraper also helps when you’re kneading.
It can easily scrape the dough that sticks to the working surface and your hands. If there is any unmixed flour, you can scoop it back to the dough using a bench scraper. For bakers, a bench scraper is almost like a third hand!
7. Knead the snow skin dough on a large surface.
When you’re kneading the snow skin dough, you’ll need to move it around quite a lot. It’s best to do it on a large working surface—especially if you’re doing it with kids!
A large chopping board is ideal for kneading due to its large and flat surface. Put a damp cloth underneath the chopping board to keep it in place until you finish kneading.
Passing the windowpane test is a good indicator that your snow skin dough is elastic enough, and it takes some time to reach this stage. Always make sure that your working surface is secure!
8. Help them with the portioning.
Even if you’re using a digital scale, weighing the snow skin dough and lotus paste can be difficult for kids. They can’t estimate how much to remove or add to reach the target weight, so it’s better to do it for them, or guide them through it.
After all the dough and filling are portioned, kids can do the fun part—wrapping the filling with snow skin dough. Be ready if they need help in rolling out the snow skin dough!
9. Let their creativity run free!
A great thing about snow skin mooncakes is that they’re highly customisable.
You don’t need to follow the recipe to a tee when it comes to flavourings and mix-ins. It’s even possible to mix and match all the different skins and fillings according to your taste.
Our range of mooncake baking kits come with various flavour combinations.
Another way to customise your mooncakes is by using molds with various shapes.
10. Focus on the experience.
Mooncake boxes for displaying your beautiful mooncakes!
Instead of aiming for a perfect outcome, focus on the quality time you’ve spent together in the kitchen with your kids.
Through this experience, they will also gain some baking and kitchen knowledge, which will certainly be useful in the long run.
The mooncakes might not look exactly like what you expected, and that’s totally fine. Kids still get satisfaction from being able to make something from scratch on their own. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy them with your little ones!
10 Essential Tips for Making Mooncakes with Your Kids
Making mooncakes with kids will require some extra work and attention compared to doing it on your own. But don’t think of it as a burden—your kids will appreciate the time you’ve spent together. The more you get them involved in the kitchen, the faster they’ll gain essential kitchen skills and knowledge.