PANE & PANINI, SNACK

STEAMED BUNS STUFFED WITH RED BEAN PASTE

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The steamed bun stuffed with red bean paste is a typical sweet bun in the north China. Back in my childhood while I was living in my hometown Shenyang, we used to buy them from the food stand crossing the street for breakfast.

A LITTLE STORY ABOUT ME

At that time the set-up of street food stand was very basic. In order to keep the buns warm in winter time, the vendor needed to put the steaming hot buns inside a case made of foam board, then covering the buns up with a thick duvet. I remembered the moment when the vendor uncovered the duvet to grab the buns, there would be hot air escaping from the case, making vapor in the air. This scene made deep impression in my mind. It signified a heart-warming breakfast and the new start of the day.

Years later I left hometown for university, afterwards moved to Hong Kong then Italy, I almost never had the red bean paste stuffed buns any more. One reason was that the selections for breakfast has been widened. Another reason was because this bun was not very common in the South China, needless to say in Italy.

A LITTLE STORY ABOUT HER

Last week Virginia of In Cucina con la Valigia reached to me asking if I could make a recipe of the steamed bun stuffed with red bean paste. In 2017 she went on a trip to Beijing. During a trekking & camping trip along the Great Wall, she took the breakfast in a farm house, where she tasted this bun. Virginia told me that that sweet steamed bun made a part of her great memory of her trip in Beijing, and she would love to remake it in her kitchen. I felt so glad and empathetic with her, since this food also used to make my day!

In this recipe I am showing you two ways to cook the stuffed buns: one is with the traditional method: steaming; the other one by pan-frying.

In questa ricetta ti mostrerò due modi di cuocerli: quello tradizionale, al vapore, un altro modo fritti in padella.

STEAMED BUNS STUFFED WITH RED BEAN PASTE 豆沙包

Recipe by Sasha WangCourse: SNACKCuisine: ChineseDifficulty: Media
Servings

4

persons
Preparation

1

hour 
Cooking

20

minutes
Resting

2

hours 

INGREDIENTS

  • All purpose flour: 400g

  • Dried yeast: 10g

  • Water: 200g

  • Red bean paste: 360g

Preparation

  • Melt the dry yeast in water (I suggest to use 10g yeast for 400g flour in winter time. You could reduce the quantity of yeast to 5g in Summer). Add the water little by little to the flour and mix them well using a pair of chopsticks.
  • Knead the flour into a dough. You should obtain a solid dough with a bouncy texture and at the same time non-sticky to the fingers.
  • Cover up the dough and rest it in a warm place until its size doubles.Lascia riposare l'impasto, copri in un luogo caldo fino a quando non sono raddoppiati di dimensione.
  • Move the leavened dough to a wood board. Lay some flour on top of the board to prevent the dough from sticking on the surface.Lavora l'impasto su una spianatoia. Stendi un pò farina sulla spianatoia, se l'impasto diventa troppo umido.
  • Knead the dough for a minute to squeeze out the air then divide it into small pieces (around 50g each). Knead each piece into small ball. Cover all the balls to prevent them from getting dry.Dividi l'impasto in pezzi (circa 50g/ pezzo). Di ogni pezzo fanne una pallina. Copri le palline per evitare che diventino troppo asciutte.
  • Take the red bean paste and divide it into small portions (around 30g each). Roll each portion into a ball.Dividi la marmellata di fagioli rossi in piccole porzioni (circa 30g l'una), arrotola ognuna di esse facendone delle palline.
  • Take a dough and poke a hole at the center using your thumb. Expand the hole using your hand to open it wider.
  • Place the red bean paste ball into the hole. Close the bun by pushing the boarders of the dough up with the help of your fist in order to seal the red bean paste inside.Metti le palline di marmellata di fagioli rossi nel buco dell'impasto. Premi i bordi dell'impasto verso l'alto aiutandoti con il pugno per assicurarti che la marmellata rimanga all'interno.
  • Place the buns in a steamer and rest them for 40-60 minutes.
  • (optional) Draw a red dot at the top center of each bun using the food coloring. (opzione) Con una bacchetta fai un punto di rosso (colorante alimentare) sui panini.
  • Place the steamer on to a wok or pot filled with water, then turn on the fire.
  • When water starts to boil, lower the fire to medium and continue to steam for 15 minutes.
  • Turn off the fire and let it cool for 5 minutes.panini al vapore ripieno di marmellata di fagioli rossi

VIDEO RECIPE

PREPARATION OF THE PAN FRIED BUNS

  • Following the steps 1-8 in the recipe above.
  • Gently press the buns into flat shape.
  • Brush a layer of water at the center of each bun and sprinkle sesame on top.Spennella con un pò d'acqua il centro del panino e cospargi di semi di sesamo.
  • Heat up a pan and place the buns in it. Pan fry them on medium-low heat for 2 minutes on each side.
  • Cover the lid and continue to cook the buns for 5 minutes on each side. Check from time to time, make sure the bottom is not burnt.panini ripieno di marmellata di fagioli rossi saltata

Are you convinced to make them yourself and have a taste of breakfast from the north China? Do you also have other Chinese dish that you would like to make at home? Let me know in the comment below.

PANINI RIPIENI DI MARMELLATA DI FAGIOLI ROSSI

To know Virginia's trekking and camping experience along the Great Wall in Beijing, head to her blog In Cucina con la Valigia.

When you prepare this dish, don't forget to SHARE IT on your social media using hashtag #cinaintavola and TAG ME @cinaintavola. FOLLOW ME on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Youtube to stay in touch!

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4 Comments

  1. Related Links Grande Muraglia Cinese per colazione e marmellata di fagioli rossi - In Cucina con la Valigia

  2. Hi Sasha – This was such a wonderful recipe. Since I don’t read Italian, I used google translate. I used Italian soft wheat flour 00 and Active Dry Yeast (I couldn’t find brewer’s yeast). The dough didn’t expand as much as I would have liked and it wasn’t as soft and pillowy as I wanted it to be. It must have been the yeast and the type of dough I used – perhaps the dough was not as fresh. It doubled in size, however the dough itself was drier than expected, I should have added more warm water. It’s always important to adjust by feel. =) Even though the dough didn’t turn out to be more pillowy, I was very happy with the result. It was so good right from the steamer, we like our food hot and steamy. My wife’s parents were over for lunch and when they saw these red bean paste buns – we were all transported back to our memories, for me – in Taiwan with my grandma and for them – in South Korea. Such beautiful memories – thank you, Sasha!

     
    • Hi Leo,

      Thank you so much for trying out my recipe. I know that this bun can bring so much memories to our Asian folks. Yes the softness of the dough varies depending on the flour used, as well as the quantity of the yeast. That’s why I am always encouraging my readers to take it as a reference and feel the dough with hands. The Italian flour is harder and drier than the Asian wheat flour. For this reason I tend to increase quantity of yeast when working with Italian flour (the usual ratio is 1g yeast for every 100g flour. but I usually double the quantity of yeast).

      Another important procedure is to knead the dough again to squeeze out the air after the size doubles (steps 3 & 4). This is to organize the gluten in a better way, at the same time restart the leavening procedure from zero. The second time the fermentation shall be much even and the texture of the dough would be smooth and spongy.

      But the best way to make it perfect is practice.

       
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