If you're an accomplished moon cake maker, you can show off your skills at the Best Fresh Moon Cakes 2010 contest on Saturday.
The competition is part of the festivities at the Moon Festival Celebration from 4 to 8 p.m. at the new MoonDance at Midnight Pass amphitheater in Beaumont Centre Circle.
What is moon cake and a moon festival? On the 15th day of the eighth lunar month of the Chinese calendar, the moon is at its fullest and brightest, marking an ideal time to celebrate the abundance of the summer's harvest. The traditional food of this festival is the moon cake, said Changzheng Wang, president of the Kentucky Chinese American Association.
When the moon is thought to be at its fullest and brightest, the Chinese community celebrates with family get-togethers and outdoor ceremonies to enjoy the beauty of the moon.
"In Lexington, the Moon Festival Celebration is where people can taste some and buy a box or two to take home," Wang said.
To enter the contest, contact Wang via e-mail at email@example.com or call (859) 224-8072. Hong Lin won the moon cake contest last year.
The moon cake consists of a thin baked crust with a soft filling that can be plain, fancy, traditional or contemporary. Before being baked, the raw moon cakes are pressed into wooden molds that give them their shape and create a traditional raised design on the top crust. For a recipe, go to FlavorsofKentucky.com.
Heritage Fest a bit early
St. Andrew Orthodox Church, 1136 Higbee Mill Road, will hold its annual Heritage Festival from noon to 8 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
Committee co-chairwoman Jeanette Gallaway said the date for this year's festival was moved up a little due to the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.
Spinach pies are among the favorite Middle Eastern dishes that will be served at the festival. Two recipes for spinach pie are at FlavorsofKentucky.com.
Your choice of fall events
Fall is a perfect time to visit some of Kentucky's agritourism destinations. Here are some events where you can eat fried apple pies, learn to make apple butter, and even learn about alpacas.
■ Boyd Orchards, 1396 Pinckard Pike, Versailles, will host a different fall festival each weekend through the end of October. Apple Days Festival is Saturday and Sunday; Scarecrow Festival, Sept. 25 and 26; Old Cider Days Fest, Oct. 2 and 3; Fall Festival, Oct. 9 and 10; Pumpkin Festival, Oct. 16 and 17; and October Fest, Oct. 23 and 24. Go to Boydorchards.com.
■ Evans Orchard, 180 Stone Road, Georgetown, will hold its harvest festival kick-off from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday with you-pick pumpkins and games. Go to Evansorchard.com or call (502) 863-2255.
■ Maple Hill Manor, 2491 Perryville Road, Springfield, will hold Fiber Fun Festival on the Farm from 1 to 5 p.m. Sept. 25. Learn about alpacas and their highly prized soft and silky, warm fiber. Go to Maplehillmanor.com or call (859) 336-3075.
■ Reed Valley Orchard, 239 Lail Lane, Paris, will hold a Country Festival and Back Forty nature walk from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Oct. 2. There will be live music; a petting zoo; a shearing demonstration; and food booths offering oven-fried apple, peach, blackberry and blueberry pies, and country ham and caramel apples. Go to Reedvalleyorchard.com or call (859) 987-6480.
■ Apple Butter Day will be Oct. 9 at Bramble Ridge Orchard, 2726 Osborne Road, Mount Sterling. Fresh apple butter, doughnuts, cider, jams and honey will be available. Go to Brambleridgeorchard.com or call (859) 498-9123.
■ Acres of Land Winery and Restaurant, 2285 Barnes Mill Road, Richmond, will have a cheese sampling and wine tasting from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 16. Cost is $1.95 for three wine tastings, and $3.75 for six wines. The cheese sampling is $5. Call (859) 328-3000.