Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Husband Cakes and Cute Little Koalas

Today we had a few interesting treats that were leftover from a farewell brunch.  One of them was a box of Macau Husband Cakes.  They were brought with a box of Macau Wife Cakes but for whatever reason the Wife cakes got consumed but not the husband cakes. Macau is once again part of China but was a Portuguese colony similar to Hong Kong prior to its reversion to China.  It was and still is known for gambling. The better known of the two cakes is the Wife Cake or sweetheart cake.  Literally translated the name means "Old Lady Cake". Presumably the translation for the Chinese name of the husband cake would be "Old Man Cake". We had one of our Chinese colleagues read it to us and she came up with the name "Old Person Cake" so we were close.
The symbol of Macau - the ruined Cathedral of St. Paul
Our two treats for the day courtesy of someone leaving!
The wife cakes were gone but the Husband Cakes remain!
 A sweetheart or wife cake is a traditional Cantonese pastry with flaky and thin skin made with winter melon, almond paste, and sesame, and spiced with five spice powder. The cake is still popular among many in Hong Kong and Mainland China. There are some great legends as to how these came about so check out the Wikipedia page:  These cakes were typical for an Asian pastry treat. They were not at all sweet and a touch on the dry side indicating they are good with a cup of tea or coffee in our case. They also had some roasted seeds on the outside contributing to the savory essence over the sweet.  We enjoyed them but might some day wish to try some fresh ones as opposed to those boxed up for sale.

The cakes themselves!
Macau, My Love!
In case you were wondering where they came from!
In addition to the Husband Cakes we had some cute little Japanese kid treats.  These were made by a company named Lotte that we had never heard of.  We were told that it is a Korean company and if you look it up it appears to be so with an international presence for food and other products.  These particular food products were made in Thailand.  These treats were called Koala's March and are very prominently described as Artificially Flavored Strawberry Creme Filled Cookies. Contrast this with the tendency for things to be labeled "all natural" not to mention organic in the Western World.  At
least we knew what we were getting into.
What do you suppose this is!

It's the Koala's March and it's artificial!
Kid Size packs not intended for further retail!
This box contained several packs of cookie treats that were intended for children and not intended for retail alone...see the disclaimer.  Inside were these little pillow like cookies that had the imprint of a Koala figure on the front. They were needless to say very cute and a hit with those prone to cuteness of things.  They were absolutely fine with no gourmet pretense.  Think of artificially flavored strawberry creme filled animal crackers and you will get the idea of what they were like.
Universally deemed to be very cute!

Made in Thailand for LOTTE USA with all the usual disclaimers!
Husband Cakes and Koalas made for an interesting cake hour fer sure!

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