The Bread Baking Babes having been baking (or should I say steaming, this time?) again and this month it’s Xiang Cong Hya Juan Bao! That’s quite a mouthful if you don’t know Chinese (I don’t) but these are very pretty looking steamed buns made with dough that has both yeast and baking powder.
I remember saving a recipe, quite a few years ago, for some steamed Chinese lotus buns. Not only did I never get around to making them, I don’t even know where that recipe disappeared to!
I have been joining the BBBs as a buddy for a little while now and thought I ought to try these ones too. This month’s recipe was chosen by Karen of Bake My Day from the Global Baker by Dean Brettschneider. He says,
“_Everywhere you go in China you see people eating steam buns, also known as mantong Typically Chinese, a sweet bread is combined with a savoury filling, such as red bean paste and barbecued pork, but take care and avoid using too much filling or the bun will fall apart during the rising and steaming stage. The baking powder helps to open up the texture and gives a little tendernes_s to the eating quality of the buns. If you can, use imported Chinese flour from a specialist Asian food market or store.”
I used the same recipe, just converted measurements into cups and spoons! I also substituted a part of the all purpose flour with rice flour as I felt it would improve the texture of the buns, and upped the amounts of both yeast and baking powder to 1/2 tsp each.
It took me while to figure out the shaping procedure and I’m still not sure I’ve really got it right! I must mention it is indeed very important to keep the filling a bit on the lesser side, or else it will leak out.