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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bread Baking Babes Chinese flower steam buns

I am still waiting for my order from King Arthur Flour to slowly make its way across the country. I am anxious to get my clear rye flour so I can make the beautiful marbled rye which is the next bread in the BBA challenge. Unfortunately, the order is spending the weekend in the warehouse, scanned and ready to arrive on Monday.

Unfortunately, my major stakeholder has become addicted to fresh bread. I knew that I would have to bake something.

Karen, one of the Bread Baking Babes, at Bake My Day posted this month's challenge, flower steam buns. Apparently, everywhere you go in China you can see people eating steam buns. I have had some stuffed buns but never the double knot ones and never in China. It was a challenge.

The first ingredient is 300g of chinese flour. Now I know exactly where I could go and buy it, but do I really need another flour in my pantry? Karen suggested cake flour which worked wonderfully.

300 g chinese flour
15 g sugar
15 g butter
pinch of salt
1/4 t baking power
1/4 t active dry yeast
150 ml chilled water, I threw ice cubes in mine

oil for brushing on dough, I used Pam
40 G finely chopped scallions
25 g finely chopped red chilis, I used sweet chili sauce

Mix all the dough ingredients to form a firm dough mass. Don't add any additional water or the buns will be flat. Place the dough on a work surface and roll out to a thin strip, fold in half and roll again. Repeat this 10 -15 times with a 30 second rest in between each time. This was fun to do, and I ended up with a very smooth, elastic dough. Put it in a bowl, cover and let rest for 15 mins. Roll onto lightly floured surface into a 25cm square. Spray with pam add the chives, chili and sea salt. Fold in half and then cut into 2.5 cm strips so you end up with 10 folded strips. I was fine up to this point... Then stretch each strip and stating at the folding edge, twist the two pieces of each strip over each other to form a rope. Not quite sure what that meant, but I think it means make the strip into a twisted rope. Take the rope and tie into a double knot, tucking the lose ends underneath. Put on parchment paper and let proof for 30 to 45 mins.

Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Steam the buns to 10 - 20 mins. Until the buns are firm to touch.

These were delicious. I can't wait to try some of the variations. You never know what the Bread Baking Babes are coming up with. Here is a list of the fabulous members and what they have baked. Karen tried a couple variations on the recipe so check her post out for tips.


  1. WHoosh.. you're so quick and they look scrumptious! Really well done! Badge is coming up!

  2. Great job. Wonderful buns. Wasn't it fun to steam bread for a change, I thought it was :)
    Thanks for baking with us!

  3. They look great! So glad you liked them too.