Yam-my mooncakes a hit with customers

JOHOR BARU - Ten days before the Mid-Autumn Festival, a local bakery's speciality of fresh yam mooncake is already flying off the shelves.

Tan Lay Kin, 53, the proprietor of Yee Siang Confectionery in Taman Sentosa here, said customers had begun asking about the mooncake which was baked with flaky, buttery dough.

"Our regular customers - some from Singapore and Kuala Lumpur - always come back to our shop to look for the yam mooncakes as they are not common. We cannot compromise on the yam paste as it is the main ingredient," said Tan, who had enlisted the help of her 10 siblings and relatives to make the mooncakes during this festive period.

"We have to wake up at 5am daily to prepare the ingredients and the process does not stop until midnight," she said, adding that the recipe for the mooncake, which was passed down from her parents, had remained the same for over 30 years.

She said the yams, freshly bought from suppliers, were peeled, soaked and mashed into paste before being steamed and left to cool.

"We make batches of dough by hand and roll the filling into them before they are baked in the store," she said, adding that the bakery could sell up to 1,000 boxes containing four of the yam mooncakes each day.

Because the mooncakes were made with no preservatives, Tan said they could only last between two days and a week if kept refrigerated.

The mooncakes are sold at RM38 (S$15) per box and RM42 for those with a single yolk.