I'm not sure when or where did I acquire this recipe for the Chinese steam buns. I found the old page yesterday tucked in between pages of a cookbook. It was a sweet coincidence that I was looking for something to cook for my kids' lunches at school. With some Pastrami in the refrigerator, I thought that it would work just wonderful. Add some fruits and baby carrots, they'll have nice healthy fulfilling lunches.
- 1 package (1 1/4 oz) active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup warm water (100-105 F)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- Pastrami or any filling of your choice
- In the small bowl, sprinkle the yeast and sugar onto the warm water, stir with spoon until the yeast dissolves and let sit for about 10 minutes until foamy.
- In a large bowl, mix flour and yeast mixture. Using hand, knead the dough until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Spray another large bowl with nonstick cooking spray, transfer the dough to the oiled bowl, cover with plastic or with damp towel. Let the dough rise until it triples in size, about 3 hours. Punch down the dough.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough using rolling pin. Roll into a log, then cut into 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball. Using your hand, flatten each ball into a 3" diameter circle. Place a teaspoon of the filling in the center and gather up edges to enclose the filling, seal the edges.
- Line the steamer rack with parchment paper, fill the bottom part of the steamer with enough water, bring to boil then reduce the temperature to simmer. Place the buns on the lined rack at least 1 inch apart.. Cover and cook until they are fluffy and cooked through.