Our Best Recipes To Throw An All-Out Feast For Mid-Autumn Festival

These traditional festival foods are the perfect way to give thanks to the harvest

By SAVEUR Editors

Published on March 18, 2019

Every year on the 15th day of the eighth month of the Lunar Calendar, Chinese and Vietnamese people gather to give thanks to the harvest. These authentic ethnic dishes draw from some of the best chinese dishes, including sticky rice dumplings. Take a stab at making Asian noodles to accompany your meat. With traditional festival dishes like savory duck, and sweet mooncakes, these recipes are the best way to celebrate the festival from the comfort of your own kitchen.

Chocolate Chip Moon Cakes with Almonds and Spiced Fruit

Pastry chef Pichet Ong's whimsical spin on the classic mooncake takes inspiration from American chocolate chip cookies. He folds chocolate chips and candied fruits into a bean- and almond-paste filling and then wraps it in brown sugar-like cookie dough. Get the recipe for Chocolate Chip Moon Cakes with Almonds and Spiced Fruit »

Crispy Duck with Udon Noodles

Browning the duck, braising it, and then re-frying the pieces makes for super crispy skin and tender meat, perfectly complemented by a flavorful chile, ginger, and sugar-spiked sauce. Get the recipe for Crispy Duck with Udon Noodles »

Birch Syrup and Soy Sauce-Glazed Roast Duck

Amy Thielen's take on traditional teriyaki uses a bit of birch syrup in addition to mirin (sweet rice wine). Compared with maple syrup, birch is more feral—darker, less sweet, and more acidic—and she prefers it for cooking. It also doesn't hurt that she can harvest it at home: Every spring she taps the silver birch trees in her yard and boils down the syrup over a wood fire. You can find birch syrup online, or use maple. (If doing so, omit the teaspoon of sugar.) Get the recipe for Birch Syrup and Soy Sauce-Glazed Roast Duck »

Green Curry and Taro Stem Soup with Bacon

This Cambodian soup is full of complex flavor from smoky bacon, crisp, cleansing taro stems and prahok (Cambodian fish paste). Get the recipe for Green Curry and Taro Stem Soup with Bacon »

Panang Chicken Curry

Basil and kaffir lime brighten this chicken curry that's full of complex flavors but deceptively easy to make. Get the recipe for Panang Chicken Curry »

Sichuan Twice-Cooked Pork Belly

A classic Chinese dish made with boiled-then-stir-fried pork and plenty of leeks and fermented black soy beans. Boiling the pork (the first "cooked") renders some of the fat and makes it easier to slice and crisp up later in a blazing-hot wok. Get the recipe for Sichuan Twice-Cooked Pork Belly »

Chinese Sticky Rice Dumplings (Zongzi)

The leaf-wrapped sticky rice dumplings zongzi (in Mandarin) or joong (Cantonese) are a snack enjoyed year-round in China, though they are especially popular in the spring. The long bamboo leaves are filled with either sweet or savory ingredients, and often made and enjoyed by families in the weeks leading up to the Dragon Boat Festival, which falls on the fifth day in the fifth month of the lunar calendar. We learned how to make these with Chinese home cook Mei Zeng, who's perfected her zongzi recipe after years of practice. Get the recipe for Chinese Sticky Rice Dumplings (Zongzi) »

Crispy Duck Breasts with Glazed Carrots

Test kitchen director Farideh Sadeghin learned the technique for this wonderfully crisp duck with soy glaze while working in the kitchen at Huka Lodge in Taupo, New Zealand. Get the recipe for Crispy Duck Breasts with Glazed Carrots »

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