In a bid to provide its foreign teachers with a better understanding of Chinese culture, Haida Interact International Company Ltd organized a DIY mooncake activity on the occasion of Mid-Autumn Festival. The activity was held at Hangzhou Jiangnan Experimental School on September 21, 2018.
The Mid-Autumn celebrations began with a brief introduction of the origin of the Mid-Autumn Festival, including the popular myth about Lady Chang’e flying to the Moon. This was followed by acquainting the teachers with the rituals like eating mooncakes, appreciating the moon, putting up lanterns and guessing lantern riddles.
However, the most interesting part of the Mid-Autumn Festival celebration by Haida International China remained the DIY mooncake baking. The teachers were first made aware of the different styles of mooncakes such as Cantonese style mooncake and Suzhou style mooncake, etc., and later participated in the mooncake making activity.
The charming baker Jenny instructed the teachers by demonstrating how to make mooncakes. She started with Cantonese style mooncakes with red bean paste, lotus seed paste and egg yolk as chief ingredients.
The teachers carefully imitated the recipe. They kneaded the dough, placed the red bean paste inside, wrapped and sealed with the dough disc. Next, they placed the stuffed mooncakes into the mould, lightly pressing the mould handle.
Guiding the teachers, baker Jenny also explained about the various flavors of fillings and how they tasted. When the mooncakes were baked to perfection, the teachers were surprised by their work. By the end of the activity, everyone was full of excitement, and packed their self-made mooncakes into traditionally designed paper bags.
According to Haida HR China, including foreign teachers in Chinese festivals and rituals makes it easier for them to understand the local culture and making themselves comfortable with it. With the DIY mooncake activity, foreign teachers not only got opportunities to understand Chinese culture and communicate with each other, but also experienced the care their recruitment agency showers them with.