Wednesday, 6 June 2007

This little piggy...

went from glistening in the window of a Chinese restaurant to a pillow of Char Siu Bao or Chinese steamed pork bun.

This beautiful marriage of sweet and savoury encased in the fluffiest of doughs is a regular on the yum cha trolley. I tried my first home made version this week at The Writer's father's house. It was his first attempt at dough and these turned out splendidly. It really is a no-excuses recipe. The succulent pork is readily available at many suburban Chinese restaurants although I do recommend sampling widely to find your favourite pork source. These are cooked in steamer baskets placed over a water filled wok on low heat. You can buy a basket for under $10 at most Asian grocers.

The recipe he used recently featured on the Cook and the Chef and in Delicious magazine. I have adjusted it below to personal taste.

Chinese BBQ Pork Buns
325g flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon Bicarb soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
10mls peanut oil
1/4 cup sugar
15g fresh yeast
1/2-3/4 cup warm water

250 g BBQ pork diced
1 spring onion sliced
1 clove garlic chopped
2 tablespoon soy
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon chinese wine
1 tsp cornflour mixed with a little water

Combine sugar, yeast and water together. The test of whether your yeast is working is when a foam develops on the surface. Sift in dry ingredients and combine to form a smooth dough.

Cover with a damp teatowel and leave in a warm place to rise for 2 hours. Knead and cover again. It should be doubled in size with an additional hour.

While rising briefly stir fry together the garlic and spring onions and incorporate the wet ingredients. Stir through the pork and take off the heat as it is already cooked and will be heated through in the steamer.

Divide dough into quarters. From each quarter you should get 3-4 balls. Flatten each ball into a disc shape. Add in a tbsp of filling and pull the edges over to form a smooth bun. Place buns in small batches into a steamer for 8-12 minutes. Don't overcrowd as these little puffs will expand.

The BBQ pork featured above and below was my lunch today with my first venture into dining in Preston. It was sourced from
C-Culture Seafood and BBQ Chinese Restaurant
437 High Street Preston
Ph: 03 9471 3633
($7 with rice or egg/rice noodle soup at lunch or 500g for $10)

Quick fingers and greedy eaters prevented me from taking shots of the actual buns on the night. For a photographic example of the final product I suggest checking out Mellie's shot from her Tummy Rumble's Yum Cha post (second shot from the bottom of the post).

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I'd also like to mention a really clever initiative of the Left Over Queen's; The Foodie Blogroll featured in the sidebar.


Lucy said...

Happens often, doesn't it? The food is ready, but the photos don't end up being taken. Too delicious to wait...

cin said...

hmm, I was wondering where the photo was. I love char siew bau and homemade is best, but have you also tried Nam Loong's?

Little Foodie said...

Triple wow! Yes please I'd like a steamer full. Amanda

Wendy said...

I used to eat these on the way home from the bar in Japan! These will be hugely fun to make!

Wendy said...

I used to eat these on the way home from the bar in Japan! These will be hugely fun to make!

Anonymous said...

I am printing your recipe as I type. I absolutely love chinese BBQ pork. I attempted it once before and failed miserably. I can't wait to try this!


Truffle said...

Lucy- it happens far too often! I really must start controlling my greed.

Cin- I haven't but thanks for the recommendation. Will definitely have to go it a go!

Amanda- Thanks! I actually think these would be a fun project for kids. I'll send one your way ;)

Wendy- That sounds like the perfect snack! Sometimes I nibble on one on the train home from work.

Michelle- I hope you enjoy. Thanks so much for reading.