Get ready to embark on a culinary adventure with our delectable Bao Bun recipe. These fluffy, steamed buns filled with succulent, flavorful ingredients are a true delight for your taste buds. Whether you’re a fan of Asian cuisine or simply looking for a unique and satisfying meal, these homemade Bao Buns will not disappoint. Follow our step-by-step guide to create a memorable meal for four. You can customize the fillings to suit your preferences, making this recipe incredibly versatile.
For the Bao Buns:
- 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
For the Filling (Choose one or mix and match):
- 1 lb. of boneless pork belly, thinly sliced, and cooked with your choice of marinade or seasoning.
- Tofu, sliced and pan-fried with a soy-ginger glaze.
- Sautéed mushrooms with garlic and sesame oil.
- Shredded and seasoned chicken or beef.
- A combination of your favorite vegetables.
For the Accompaniments:
- Hoisin sauce
- Sriracha sauce
- Sliced cucumbers
- Fresh cilantro leaves
- Chopped scallions
Step 1: Prepare the Bao Bun Dough
- In a small bowl, combine the warm water and yeast. Let it sit for about 5 minutes until it’s frothy.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
- Pour the yeast mixture and vegetable oil into the dry ingredients.
- Mix until the dough comes together.
- Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 5-7 minutes until it’s smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, and let it rise for 1-2 hours until it doubles in size.
Step 2: Shape and Steam the Bao Buns
- Punch down the dough and roll it out into a long cylinder shape.
- Cut the dough into equal pieces, roughly 2 inches in diameter. You should get about 8-10 pieces.
- Roll each piece into a ball and then flatten it with a rolling pin into an oval shape.
- Fold the ovals in half without completely closing them. Place a small piece of parchment paper under each bun.
- Arrange the buns on a steamer, leaving some space in between to allow for expansion.
- Cover the steamer with a lid, and let the buns steam for 15-20 minutes until they puff up and become soft and fluffy.
Step 3: Prepare the Filling
- While the buns are steaming, prepare your filling of choice. Cook and season your protein or vegetables as desired.
Step 4: Assemble the Bao Buns
- Gently open each steamed bun.
- Spread a small amount of hoisin sauce inside.
- Add your cooked filling.
- Top with sliced cucumbers, fresh cilantro leaves, and chopped scallions.
- Drizzle with a touch of Sriracha sauce if you like a bit of heat.
Step 5: Serve and Enjoy
Place your homemade Bao Buns on a serving platter and let everyone build their own. These buns are best enjoyed fresh and warm, making them a perfect choice for a delightful and interactive meal with family or friends.
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