Among many traditional cakes favoured by Ho Chi Minh City dwellers during the Tet (New Year) festival are pomegranate cakes, which are believed to bring good luck for the whole family, especially love.
The cake stands out for its unique shape and eye-catching red petal tops. It is named after pomegranate because it is shaped like one, not because it is made with the fruit.
There are nearly 10 stages to go through before the cakes reach the customers, including cooking the sugar, mixing the rice, squeezing them in the mould, peeling, making the sesame coat, and painting the colour.
The cake’s filling is made with split roasted peanuts, lotus seeds, sticky rice and malt. The filling is placed in a thin piece of rice flour nearly as big as the palm. The cook can make the cake in oval or round shapes. Then the cook uses scissors to shape the petals on top of the cake and paints food colouring on the petals of the cake
The cake is deep fried with the petals facing down. The crust, with an appetising golden colour, is covered with a layer of sesame so that the cake has a sweet, slightly fatty taste with a pleasant aroma.