Renowned for being light and fluffy, the perfect bao should be light, round and soft. Traditional Chinese steamed buns are round in shape with an enclosed filling, usually with Char Siu roast pork or a traditional ground pork mixture with slices of Chinese sausage (lap cheong) and boiled egg. They also come in a plain form without any filling, called Mántóu [馒头] which originates from China.
The folded-over version has become increasingly popular, from street food to being served in upscale restaurants. The buns open up and are filled with a variety of ingredients, similar to a burger or sandwich. It is commonly filled with pork, however due to its popularity, the filling choices that people have come up with have become much more diverse. Here we have a fool-proof recipe on how to make the perfect steamed baos, and the choice of filling is completely up to you!
The equipment you'll need:
- Free-standing mixer
- Measuring spoons
- Damp cloth
The dry ingredients:
- 530g middle gluten wheat flour (or plain flour)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 7g fast action dried yeast
- 40g caster sugar
- 15g baking powder
The wet ingredients:
- 50g milk
- 200g - 250g warm water (depending on how humid your room feels- if the air feels very dry you’ll want to add a little more water, but if it is very humid, a little less water is required)
- 25g vegetable or sunflower oil
6. Fill with any filling of your choice and enjoy!
Original recipe from School of Wok.