Sunday, September 29, 2013

Steamed Chicken Bun (Gai Bau)

This steamed bun project ranks pretty high up on my to do list because the boss man loves 'Dai Bau' (translation: 'Big Bun') and other Baus from Nam Loong.

I got the following bun skin recipe from a Chinese cook book.  I have altered the original recipe so that I can use the usual supply in my pantry and I don't need to buy any extra ingredient from the Asian grocery.  That is, I have used low-gluten flour instead of "Hong Kong" flour; I also have used rice bran oil instead of shortening/lard.

Ingredients for 16 buns

(A) Bun Skin
300g low gluten wheat flour
7g dry instant yeast (1 satchet=7g)
5g baking powder
70g sugar
25g light oil (I used rice bran)
120ml water

(B) Filling
500g chicken mince
Half an onion, diced finely and stir fried till soft
1/2 cup sweet corn
Seasoning (Salt, sugar, oyster sauce, sesame oil, pepper)

1. Combine ingredients (B) for filling in a large bowl and set aside for later use.

2. Combine all ingredients (A) for bun skin in a large bowl and knead until smooth. Divide to 16 equal parts, press and roll flat, thicker in the middle and thin at sides.  To make the paper base, just cut baking paper into the size you want.

3. Place a tablespoon of filling on bun skin and wrap. Set aside for 30 minutes to let rise.

4. Steam over high heat for 15 minutes (Put a few drops of white vinegar in the water in the steamer. This will prevent the buns from turning yellow!)

This is my 1st attempt, so please pardon the lack of bun wrapping technique.  As I practice more, I hope to make the buns into rabbit-shape, pig-face-shape, or basically any shape that could entice my little boy to eat more of these buns.  The dough is really forgiving, and can be stretched and patched as you please!

For the filling, I've used minced chicken and sweet corn.  But you can use pretty much anything you like.  Here are some ideas:

- Jap Chae (Health Score= 9 out of 10)
- Red bean or sesame paste (7 out of 10),
- Curry (5 out of 10)
- Chocolate (3 out of 10)
- Peanut butter (3 out of 10)
- Braised pork belly and mushrooms (1 out of 10)
- Nothing (a.k.a. "Man Tau") (0 out of 10!!!)


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