Steamed Wasabi Bao Buns
- 175ml Warm Milk
- 7g Yeast
- 400g Plain Flour
- ½ tsp Salt
- ½ tsp Baking Powder
- ½ tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
- 1 tsp Wasabi Powder (if you don’t have any wasabi at home, you can create the recipe without, they are still delicious!)
- 35g Sugar
- 50g Melted Butter (Cooled)
- Toppings of your choice – eg. sesame seeds, or none if you don’t have any to hand.
- Mix together the milk and yeast in a jug and set aside for 10 minutes.
2. Place all the remaining dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir together to combine. If the wasabi isn’t to your taste, don’t worry, you can leave it out! Add the milk mixture and melted butter and combine the ingredients until everything comes together to form a dough.
3. Mix the dough in a tabletop mixer with a dough hook attachment for 10 minutes on medium speed, or knead by hand for 15 to 20 minutes, until you have a soft elastic dough that sticks to itself and not your hands.
4. Roll the dough into a ball and place in an oiled bowl. Cover with clingfilm or a clean, damp tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 hour. Whilst waiting for your dough to rise, cut 11-12 squares of greaseproof paper, approximately 9x9cm each.
5. Once your dough has risen, turn it out onto an oiled worksurface and using an oiled rolling pin, roll out to about 5mm thick. Flip the sheet of dough over and gently roll over the surface again, this will give your buns a smooth finish. Using a 10cm cookie cutter (or the rim of a mug, if you don’t have one) cut out as many circles as possible (we made 7). Save the off cuts of dough, you will use these later.
6. Lightly oil the surface of each circle and fold them in half to make small taco shapes. Gently roll over the buns again to press them together and flatten slightly. Transfer each bun onto a square of greaseproof paper.
7. Weigh the remaining dough into equal 90g portions (we had 4) and roll into balls to form burger buns. Place the buns on greaseproof squares as before.
8. Lightly oil the tops of the buns and sprinkle with the sesame and nigella seeds. Cover with clingfilm and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
9. Using a steamer if you have one, or a colander over a pan of boiling water with the lid placed on top, steam the buns on the squares of paper to prevent them from sticking. Leave about 2.5cm between the buns to allow room for them to rise. Steam the folded bao buns for 5 minutes and the burger buns 10 minutes. Cook the buns in batches, if you need to.
10. Whilst they are still warm, gently separate the folded bao buns along the split. You can slice the burger buns once cool. Enjoy your buns with your favourite filling!
These light and fluffy Chinese buns are great for sharing, try them as a lunchtime meal with pickled vegetables and wasabi mayonnaise, or stuff with Char Siu for a delicious feast.