Thursday 8 September 2016

Chocolate Pandan Hedgehog Snowskin Mooncakes

I have been toying with various ideas on how to decorate the birthday cake for my dad that I will be making really soon and these critters came up on the spur of the moment!

Hedgehog snowskin mooncakes with Pandan lotus paste filling and chocolate snowskin!

I used my favourite snowskin recipe that involves cooking the dough a little to give it a more long-lasting moistness. I used store-bought Pandan lotus paste from Phoon Huat but feel free to choose other flavours like chocolate or plain lotus, or even make your own custard filling or homemade lotus paste from scratch. I am hard-pressed for time so I worked with ready-made filling.

Recipe for snowskin hedgehog mooncakes
Ingredients (makes about 8 mooncakes):

1/3cup cooked glutinous rice flour (kao fen 糕粉) for dusting

Plain snowskin
106g kao fen
106g icing sugar
36g vegetable shortening
176g pandan water (boil a few Pandan leaves in a pot of water for 10 minutes)
1/4 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
1/4 tsp caramel essence (optional)

Chocolate snowskin
82g kao fen
82g icing sugar
28g vegetable shortening
135g hot water
1 heaped tsp Dutch processed cocoa powder (you may use regular cocoa powder but the colour will be lighter)
1/4 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
Charcoal powder

400g Pandan lotus paste (or filling of your choice)
1-2 tbs toasted melon seeds (optional)

1. For each of the flavours of snowskin, sift icing sugar and kao fen together in a bowl. Dissolve cocoa powder in hot water.

2. Place shortening, water (Pandan or cocoa) and flavourings (if using) in a small saucepan and heat over low heat until shortening is fully melted but water need not boil.

3. Pour water with melted shortening into flour mixture. Use a spatula to mix well until a dough forms. Loosely cover with cling wrap and let it cool until you are able to handle with your hands. About 15-20 minutes.

4. Toast some melon seeds and knead it into the Pandan lotus paste.

5. Divide the filling into 50g each. Roll into a ball before making one end tapered until you get a teardrop shape.

6. Knead the dough on a non stick mat, dusting with kao fen as necessary if it feels sticky. Reserve about 8g of plain dough for the ears. Divide the rest of the plain dough into 8 equal portions of about 52-53g each.

7. Wrap each filling with plain dough and pinch seal it. Place the seal side down.

8. Portion out about 8g of chocolate dough and colour it black with some charcoal powder. Divide the chocolate dough into 8 equal portions, about 40g each.

I apologise for the lack of photos for the next part of shaping the critter as I was rushing. Hopefully the descriptions are clear enough!

Use your palm or a rolling pin to roll a ball of chocolate dough into a flat disc. The disc should be big enough to wrap around the hedgehog from the top to the sides.

Use a bench scraper to cut off one segment such that there is a straight edge. Use a small knife to create the zigzag "fringe" at the hedgehog's head by cutting out small triangles.

Carefully wrap this onto the assembled hedgehog body and smooth it out. Carefully cut off any excess dough with a knife.

Use a pair of kitchen scissors to snip the back of the hedgehog to create the spikes. Gently lift up each spike after you snip the snowskin.

Add on ears, eyes and nose on the hedgehog.

Just another ear to add on for us!

Store assembled hedgehog in the fridge in an airtight container that is not too big for your mooncakes. Best consumed within 1-5 days of assembly. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours to let the snowskin set.

I had a little extra dough to play with so I made some snowskin mushrooms :)

Extra deco for the cake I will be making!

Here's the post for the gula melaka sponge and pudding cake that these critters sat on!

With lots of love,
Phay Shing

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