My entire family gets a bit giddy when they realize they are having some bao for dinner. Bao can mean a few things, but basically you are dealing with a steamed bun. Stuffed, or not. In my case, bao is initially steamed, then filled with well, whatever your heart desires.
When I first decided to introduce these Chinese steamed buns to my kids, I knew that there would be some hesitation in trying them. But when they first bit into them, they really fell in love. Normally I like to eat these bao filled with pulled pork and lathered in barbecue sauce, but this time around I decided to make a larb bao, and it was dynamite.
Let’s get started.
- 1 order of cooked chicken larb, see recipe
- 1 package of frozen bao, steamed
- fresh cilantro, torn
- Roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
That’s it for this recipe. A simple minced meat Thai dish, simple buns, and fresh herbs, and peanuts. Does life get any better than this?
Steam your buns. They take about 11 minutes. I line some parchment paper in my two-tier steamer. Place as many buns as you can in there, cover, bring to a boil, and steam. Your minced meat mixture should already be cooked, and warmed. Prepare the cilantro and peanuts. You can also use fresh mint if you want. Be creative.
When the buns are done steaming, remove them from the steamer, place in a bowl, and cover with a towel to keep them warm.
To plate, open the bun, spoon in some of the Thai minced meat, add some cilantro and peanuts and you are on your way. I am not kidding when I tell you how awesome the bao is. If you have ever had one, you will most certainly agree. It’s small, it’s light, and it is a bit sweet. Stuff away, and repeat. Go get more bao because it goes quick, and if you have kids like mine, they will be asking for more. It’s that good. Give the bao a shot and let me know what you think. As always, enjoy the recipe.