For nearly the last eight years, I have been buying frozen siao pao from the asian market. You can buy these with chicken or pork inside, and both are really yummy. The thing about the siao pao is that it needs no sauce, and really delicious as a snack, and ultimately fills you up. What more needs to be said.
This past week gave me a good opportunity to get away from making breads and allowed me to move onto another yeast product, the siao pao. The process is not uncommon from making any kind of dough, it simply takes time to make, primarily due to the rise process.
Yields nearly 14 steamed buns.
- 2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 3/4 teaspoon white sugar
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons warm water
- 1 cup and 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon and 1-1/2 teaspoons white sugar
- 2-1/4 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- Meat of your choice, I used a slow cooked barbecue pulled pork
Start by mixing together the yeast, the 3/4 tsp sugar, 3 tbs flour, and the 3 tbs of warm water. Let this stand for roughly 30-45 minutes. Then mix in the 1/4 cup and 2 tbs of warm water, the 1 cup and 2 tbs of flour, salt, 1 tbs and 1 1/2 tsp of sugar, and vegetable oil. Mix to form a dough, then take it out and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic. In a large bowl, drizzle in some olive oil, and roll the dough ball in the oil. Cover and let stand until tripled in size, roughly 3 hours.
Let these stand covered until double, for nearly another 30 minutes.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil,then reduce to a medium-low heat (keeping in mind that the water should be at a low boil). Get your steamer ready and transfer the buns, as many as you can fit onto the steamer, including the wax paper, leaving a couple inches apart. Cover and let steam for roughly 20 minutes.
Remove the lid before you turn off heat and continue steaming batches of buns until all are cooked.
Let cool, and enjoy. Trust me, these are worth the wait.