Pau (Chinese Bun) Recipe

Yesterday I made pau again – trying to improve the recipe from the last time I made it. This time the texture of the pau skin was softer and smoother – what I did differently this time is that I let the dough to prove until it doubles in volume and kneading it for a while – thereby the dough is easier to work with. And I rolled the dough as thinly as I could so that the skin is not too thick. Herewith is the recipe for the filling and the pau skin:

Ingredients for the filling:
– garlic and ginger
– big onions (sliced into cubes)
– soaked shitaake mushroom (sliced thinly)
– finely chopped brinjals
– green peas
– stems of Chinese mustard leaves (chopped finely)
– vegetarian oyster sauce
– dark soy sauce
– light soy sauce
– green peas flour (as thickening agent) (Mix the green peas flour with a little water until it forms a paste)
– a dash of white pepper

Steps: Saute garlic, ginger and big onions in a pan with little oil. Add in all the other vegetables (mushroom, brinjals, green peas, and stems of mustard leaves). Add some oyster sauce, and dark and light soy sauce. and add the green peas flour paste. Season with white pepper.

Ingredients for pau skin:
Starter dough:
– 175 gm cake flour
– 1/2 tsp yeast
– 1/2 tsp sugar
– 75 ml warm water

Steps: Dissolve yeast and sugar in water in a separate bowl, then add to the cake flour. Mix everything together and prove until doubled (takes about 2 hours or so). Note: Cover it with plastic foil to avoid the mixture getting dried. This mixture is still slightly sticky.

Main dough:
– Starter dough
– 50 gm sugar
– 2 tsp double acting baking powder
– 3 tsp warm water
– 100 gm all-purpose flour
– 20 gm vegetable shortening

Steps: Mix sugar with warm water until sugar dissolves. Let it to cool. In a separate bowl, add baking powder and shortening and mix it with the sugar mixture until smooth. Then, add flour to the mixture and mix everything together. Add this mixture to the starter dough and knead for a few minutes until you get a smooth dough. (Note: At this point, the dough will still be sticky and sticks to your hand when you try kneading it. You have to add some flour until it doesn’t stick to your fingers – if you add too much of flour the pau skin tends to be firmer and harder – so, add flour to the point where you can knead it a little – the dough texture should be neither too sticky nor too hard). Leave this dough to rise for 20-30 minutes. After 20-30 minutes, portion the dough to small balls. Roll out the dough as thinly as possible and then wrap filling and pleat the top into a pau. Steam immediately after wrapping. Steam pau with high heat for 10 – 15 minutes or until the pau is cooked. Serve hot.

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2 Responses to Pau (Chinese Bun) Recipe

  1. Anonymous says:

    Looks delish! Tried making Bao before without success. I think restaurants use ammonia powder to make their Bao whiter. I’m not sure what it’ll do to your health though.

  2. AGAPE says:

    Yeps, some of them use the bleached flour – and it’s obviously not good especially if you consume in large quantities – these home-made paus don’t create that much of guilty-feeling-effect when you eat it – and you can eat more 😉 Hope you try the recipe and enjoy!

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