Friday, January 24, 2014

Steamed Buns

Sometimes I crave steamed buns. I think it is the weirdest thing from my childhood that I crave. I haven't had steamed buns for years so when I was looking up recipes for the upcoming Chinese New Year I knew I would make some. The day I made the steamed buns I had two sisters stop by. My youngest sister didn't want any and she didn't remember having them as a kid. She is younger than me by seven years so it is forgivable plus she didn't live in Hawaii and Guam. The other sister is only sixteen months younger than me (yes, it is important to note that I will not allow her to say she is 2 years younger than me) well she remembered having steamed buns. She took a few home with her to give to my Mom since she had just been telling Mom about missing having steamed buns. My sister also told me the buns had the right taste and consistency but the meat was a little different. My kids and husband loved them. If you have never tried them, steamed buns are like a very soft roll with a barbeque pork filling.
Steamed Buns
1 (1/4 oz.) package of active dry yeast 
7 tsp sugar
2 1/2 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup warm water
1/4 tsp salt 
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup shredded cooked barbeque pork

  1. In a small bowl, combine the yeast, 1 tsp sugar, 1/4 cup flour, and 1/4 cup warm water. Set aside for 30 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the yeast mixture with 2 1/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup water, salt, 2 Tbsp sugar (6 tsp), and the vegetable bowl. 
  3. Mix until smooth and elastic.  Place the dough into a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rise for 3 hours.
  4. Punch down the dough and sprinkle the baking powder on top of the dough.
  5. Knead the dough for about 10 times before transferring onto a lightly floured surface. 
  6. Roll out the dough and divide the dough into 24 pieces.
  7. Flatten out the dough slightly and place 1 tsp of the barbeque pork in the center of the dough.
  8. Wrap the dough around the pork to seal the dough in the center forming a ball.
  9. Allow the dough with the pork to rest for 30 minutes. 
  10. Place the dough onto a greased steamer plate with holes. (I used a nonstick cooking spray.)
  11. Add about 1 cup of water into a steamer and place the steamer plate at 2 inches above the water.
  12. Steam the buns for 15 minutes.
  13. Remove from steamer and serve.
Recipe adapted from Carol chi-wa Chung at Allrecipes

One year ago...................................I made Baking Powder Biscuits.
Two years ago.................................I made Pavlovas.
Assembling the buns before steaming
Did you already know......................
-Another name for steamed buns are called cha siu bao.
-In Hawaii, the steamed bun is called manapua.
-Manapua tend to be larger in size than the Chineses cha siu bao.

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