Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Fresh Bao, How Quaint
OMG!! I made Char Siu Bao today and it was awesome!!
OK, to be honest, I made a dumbed down version, but it was still really, really good.
Instead of making the bao from scratch ("Did she really make fresh bao? Quaint!") I cheated and used these yeast rolls that come frozen. They are just good yeast rolls, a little sweet and very puffy. I thawed them out, let them rise, stuffed them and let them rise again.
But that was the only cheating part. I did make my own version of the barbecue sauce, so it may not be exactly authentic, but it tasted amazing.
I slow roasted a pork shoulder butt - just over 2 lbs.: first I covered it in salt, pepper, chopped garlic and olive oil, seared it in a hot pan and then put it on a grate in my roaster, with a little water (not touching the roast), covered it tightly with foil and roasted it for an hour at 350F and for three additional hours at 300F.
When it came out it just fell apart, so I shredded it up and put it in the sauce I had made, in the same pan where I seared the roast. I removed all the garlic bits that had fallen off the roast when I seared it, cause it was starting to look burnt, but left all the lovely pork flavor. Then I added a little more oil, about half a finely chopped onion and one finely chopped clove of garlic. While that sauteed, I added 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp salt, 3 tbls brown sugar, 1 tbls soy sauce, 2 tbls white vinegar and 5 tbls hoisin sauce. Keep in mind that these figures are all guesses cause I didn't really measure anything, but I just kept tasting it as I went along to make sure I had what I wanted.
Once I added in the roast pork (and I only used about 1/2 of it), the pork mostly soaked up the sauce, so it had the flavor, but wasn't all saucy.
I split up the pork into 9 buns (there are three of us and I wanted us to all have 3 each - cause we like to eat), twisted the edges up and let them rise again, and then steamed them in my metal veggie steamer for about 15 minutes. I don't have a bamboo steamer, but this worked just fine.
I did put two of them in the oven, just to see what would happen and they were good that way as well, just a little crunchier.