Search My Blog

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Steamed Five Spice Pork Buns

For a lot of us, the fall is a time for foraging, harvesting, and preparing for winter. For me, the fall included stocking my freezer full of meals to get me through the first few months with my newborn. And today is one of the days in which I enjoyed the fruits of my labour from the fall.

I had been running around all morning tending to a 3 month old baby's every need, and before I knew it, my stomach was grumbling. Even though I pride myself in having a fully stocked fridge and pantry most of the time, I also pride myself in staying away from most process foods and making things from scratch. So of course, when I opened my fridge, I had lots of fruits and veggies that would need to be broken down (which is difficult with one arm holding a baby) and in my pantry, lots of dry ingredients waiting to be made into bread and muffins, or needing to be cooked (like legumes and grains). So, freezer it was. Oh, and there were so many choices! Thank goodness for that fall preparation.

My choice today: Five Spice Pork Buns. All they needed was to be steamed for about 20 minutes. No steamer? No problem. Just boil a few inches of water, place a rack or upside down bowl in the bottom, and rest a dish with your buns on top. Cover and let steam. After 20 minutes, I was able to enjoy these delicious, tasty homemade buns without any fuss! Having these buns in the freezer saved the day. Oh, and they were so much better than the store bought ones!

Steamed Five Spice Pork Buns
Makes 12 buns

3 cups Flour
1/4 cup Sugar
2 1/4 tsp (7g/1 Sachet) Active Dried Yeast
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
Large Pinch of salt
1 cup Milk
1 tbsp Vegetable Oil

500 g Pork Loin, cut into small cubes
1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
2 cloves Garlic, minced
1 tbsp Brown Sugar
1 tbsp Ginger, grated or minced
3 tsp Chinese Five Spice Powder
1/4 cup Oyster Sauce
2 tbsp Soy Sauce
1 tbsp Sesame Oil
1 cup  Bamboo Shoots or Water Chestnuts, chopped
3/4 cup Green Onion, thinly sliced

Preparing the dough:
In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, yeast, baking powder and salt. Mix in the milk and oil until the dough starts to come together. Knead either by hand or with a dough hook until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Let rest for at last 15 minutes (while preparing the filling).

Preparing the filling: 
Heat the vegetable oil in large pan over medium high heat. Cook the pork for about 3-4 minutes until it starts to brown. Add the garlic, sugar, ginger, and five spice and cook with the pork for about a minute. Stir in the oyster sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil and bamboo shoots or water chestnuts. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the green onion. Let the mixture cool to room temperature.

Assembling the buns:
Knead the rested dough for another 5 minutes. Then cut into 12 equal pieces and flatten each into a round about 3 inches in diameter. Add a few spoons of filling into the centre of the dough. Then fold the edges of the dough over the stuffing and pinch together at the top. Place each finished bun on a small piece of parchment paper. At this point, you can freeze the buns in an airtight container to enjoy later.

Steam the buns for 10 minutes if fresh or 20 minutes if frozen by placing a steam rack over boiling water. Enjoy warm. 

No comments:

Post a Comment