Filled Chinese Sweet Buns
You like savory? These soft like clouds can be filled with molten cheese, broccoli and minced onion. Prefer something sweet? Try filling these buns with coconut cream custard and toasted coconut.
Don’t have a scale? This site enables you to convert from grams to cups: http://www.traditionaloven.com/tutorials/conversion.html
The roux (made on the stove):
25 g bread flour
125 g water
Roux (see above)
540 g bread flour
86 g white sugar
7 g salt
11 g yeast
86 g whole eggs
59 g whipping cream or heavy cream
63 g milk
49 g softened butter
Broccoli, lightly steamed
Cheese, finely shredded
Coarse Grain Mustard
Hot Peppers, minced
Coconut Custard (see recipe, below)
1 egg (for egg wash)
1 tsp sesame seeds (optional)
- First, make the roux: whisk together flour and water in a saucepan over medium heat until thickened. The whisk should leave trails in the mixture- you should be able to see the bottom of the saucepan. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. This process is quick! Stay vigilant!
- Warm the milk in the microwave, then dissolve in it the yeast. Let sit for 10 minutes or until activated and puffy.
- In a mixing bowl combine bread flour, white sugar and salt.
- Add activated yeast to dry ingredients and stir to combine.
- Add the eggs and whipping cream to dry ingredients and again stir to combine. Don’t panic, it won’t look at all like a nice ball of dough at this point.
- Add the roux and butter to the bowl and mix with a wooden spoon. As this becomes more difficult, feel free to start using your hands. Work the dough into a cohesive, shaggy mass and turn onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough until smooth and elastic, roughly 15 minutes.
- Lightly grease a bowl or proofing container. Draw dough into a tight ball and place it seam down in the container, covering with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel. You may want to take note of the weight so that you can divide dough into equal balls later to ensure even baking. Place in a warm spot and let dough rise until doubled in size (roughly an hour and a half).
- While you wait for dough to rise, prepare the filling and grease a muffin tray (if that’s what you’re using). You could also try a bundt pan or bread tin.
- When doubled in size, punch down dough with your knuckles and turn out onto a lightly floured surfaced. Press equally over surface (as if you were spreading pizza dough) to remove air bubbles.
- Divide into equal balls (if using a muffin tray, divide total weight by 12). Use a rolling pin to flatten dough.
- Place 1-2 tablespoons of your choice of filling on each flattened ball. Over-fill at your own peril! Try mixing your favorite veggies and cheese. Or opt for a sweet treat with coconut, chocolate or maraschino cherries.
- Fold dough over filling, pinching with your fingers to close it all together. Roll and pinch, roll and pinch. Once the seam is secure, place ball seam down in the pan. Repeat with remaining balls.
- Cover pan with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and let rise again for another 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350° F.
- Ready to bake? Whisk an egg and lightly brush tops of buns. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, if desired.
- Bake for ~20 minutes until a deep, golden color on top. Remove from oven and let sit in pan for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.
Coconut Custard Recipe:
1/2 cup white sugar
3/4 cup coconut milk
3/4 cup milk divided into two bowls (1/2 cup in one, 1/4 cup in another)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 large egg yolks
pinch of salt
3/4 cup toasted coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla or coconut extract
1 tablespoon butter
- Combine sugar, coconut milk and 1/2 cup of regular milk in a saucepan and bring to a simmer, whisking occasionally.
- Meanwhile, stir together cornstarch and 1/4 cup of regular milk in a small bowl.
- In another bowl whisk together egg yolks and salt.
- Add 1/3rd of the simmering saucepan mixture to the egg yolk mixture to temper it. Then pour the combined mixture back into the saucepan. Whisk, whisk, whisk.
- Add the cornstarch mixture to the saucepan and whisk constantly until thickened and bubbly.
- Remove from heat and stir in toasted coconut, extract and butter.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap, pressing directly onto the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming during cooling. Transfer to fridge and chill until set.
- Once cooled, the filling is ready to be used to fill your sweet buns.
Inspired by Instructables’ Bakery Buns Recipe.