Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Homemade Mantou

So I finally got around to making homemade mantou (I said I would in my previous post about Province). I think mine need a little bit of work - they seemed a little denser than I would have liked, but I'm sure my grandma would be proud. I sauteed some scallions in a little bit of teryaki sauce and mixed it in with the dough before forming them into buns. I was hoping that the scallions would add a little bit of flavor since I wasn't going to make them into meat sandwiches. I also toasted some sesame seeds, in which I dipped the buns before steaming.

The recipe that I got off the internet says that it makes 32 buns (I think it really makes 16). I halved this recipe and made 8 buns.

Here's the recipe in full for 16 buns:

1 tablespoon yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water
4 cups all-purpose flour

In a small bowl, sprinkle yeast and sugar over 4 tablespoons of the warm water and leave it for 15 minutes. Place the flour in a bowl and make a well in the center. Pour in the yeast mixture and the remaining water. Mix everything to a dough. Turn it onto a floured board and knead until smooth.

Return dough to the bowl, cover and let it stand in a warm place for about an hour or until doubled in size. Punch down, cover again and let it stand for 20 minutes longer.

Knead the dough again and shape into rolls (I found that using a bit of flour helps the shaping). Bring the water in the bottom of a steamer to a boil. Place the rolls in the steamer, leaving a 1- inch gap between them. Cook for 10 minutes, or until firm and cooked through. Serve
them hot.

scallions sauteed

sesame seeds toasted and on plate ready for dipping

the dough mixed with scallions

Since I didn't have a proper steamer, I used this stainless steam vegetable steamer instead.

I turned it upside down and place it in the pot. the three metal prongs acted as a trivet.

the buns formed and dipped in sesame seeds and....

placed in the pot on top of the steamer. Covered and steamed for 10 minutes.

Voila! Homemade mantou buns. Check out the steam rising off those puppies! (I couldn't fit all the buns on one plate so had to make the remaining two on the second round.)

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