December 05, 2009

BBQ Pork Buns

I love pork buns. If you've never had them, you're in luck! You can easily (so easily) make them yourself at home. It just might be the easiest bread you'll ever make. There's no need to follow the directions on the filling either. Just toss in whatever you feel like. I suggest savory goodness, but sweet (e.g. red beans, cream, etc.) will work too if that's your thing. A little goes a long way. Enjoy!

Basic Bun Recipe

This is a basic Chinese steamed dough recipe. When preparing a specific recipe such as Flower Rolls, the instructions will call for adding baking powder to the dough to give it extra lift.


2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour


1. Place the yeast in a bowl and pour the warm water over. Stir in the sugar to dissolve. Let stand for 15 minutes.
2. Sift the flour into a bowl. Add the yeast and water mixture and begin stirring immediately. Keep stirring until you have a dough that holds together and doesn't stick to the sides of the bowl. Adjust the amount of water, adding more or less as is needed.
3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until it is smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes). Add more flour or water if needed. Cover and let rest for 1 1/2 hours. Punch the dough down again, and let it rest for 1 - 1 1/2 more hours, until it's size has doubled. Use as called for in the recipe.

Yields 24 steamed pork buns.

BBQ Pork Recipe


2 tablespoons oil
1 scallion, chopped fine
1 clove garlic, chopped fine
1/2 pound barbecued pork cut into small cubes
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch, dissolved in 2 tablespoons water or chicken stock


1. Follow Basic Bun recipe (above) through step 3 (preparing the dough and letting it rest).
2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in wok. Stir fry scallion and garlic 30 seconds. Add pork. Stir fry 1 minute. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar.
3. Pour in dissolved cornstarch. Stir fry quickly until pork is glazed. Remove to bowl and allow to cool.
4. On a floured board, knead dough 1 minute and roll into one long, sausage-like roll 2 inches in diameter.
5. Slice the roll crosswise into 1 inch pieces.
6. Flatten each piece with the palm of your hand and roll with rolling pin into 3 inch rounds.
7. Place 2 tablespoons of filling in center of each round.
8. Gather dough up around the filling by pleating along the edges.
9. Bring the pleats up and twist securely and firmly.
10. Place each bun on 2 inch square of aluminum foil on steamer tray. Cover with a towel. Let rise 1 hour, until dough springs back when touched with finger. Remove towel.
11. Steam over briskly boiling water 10 minutes.

May be prepared in advance. May be frozen. Thaw out in plastic bag and resteam 10 minutes.
Recipe courtesy of

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