We spent a day with Nic's grandmother a few weeks ago to learn how to make those delectable dim sum treats: steamed barbecue pork buns!
We made a smaller batch that turned out pretty close to the original.
- 700 grams white unbleached all-purpose flour (Canadian all-purpose, mind you)
- 60 grams margarine (unsalted)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon yeast (quick-rise)
- 2 cups lukewarm water
- Filling! We fried up some ground pork with soy sauce, oyster sauce, onions, garlic, and a tin of tomato paste. Not the same as grandma makes it (unless your grandma is Italian), but still awfully tasty in a steamed bun.
Mix the flour, margarine, baking power and salt. In another container, mix the yeast and 1.5 cups of the water. Then combine everything and mix well. With 1.5 cups of water, it will be too dry, so add more water until you get the right consistency. If it ends up too wet and sticky, just add a bit more flour (at most 1/8c at a time; it doesn't take much!). The dough should be soft and pliable, but not get stuck to your hands. The amount of flour versus water will vary every time you make it, depending on the moisture content of the flour and the relative humidity of the day.
Pull off balls of dough about halfway between golf ball and raquet ball size, and flatten into a pizza crust shape. Dollop a LARGE gob of filling into the middle. Then go around the edge, pulling the dough together gradually to form a cup, and then a ball around the filling. Place on squares of wax or parchment paper, keeping damp cloth on the top to keep them from drying out. When they're all ready, space them out nicely in a steamer. Ours were a bit too close, but we had 2 extra buns, so squeezed them all in anyway. Steam over boiling water for 20 minutes. Be careful when you take them out, as they're quite hot.
Enjoy steamed barbecue bun goodness!