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Shuǐ Jiān Bāo 水煎包

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This recipe is for a simple pan-fried and steamed baozi. Think of these as a cross between a potsticker and a steam bbq pork bun (char siu bao). We’ll use a yeasted dough like a steam bbq pork bun, but the cooking methodology of a potsticker!

Active Time: 25-30 minutes

Total Time: 60-75 minutes

Yield: ~24 small baozi

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Ingredients

  • ½ cup of loosely packed cilantro, minced | 16g
  • 2 scallion, minced | 35g
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger | 2g
  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil | 14g
  • ⅓ lb ground pork | 150g
  • ¼ cup minced bamboo | 35g
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese Shaoxing wine | 5g
  • 1 teaspoon oyster sauce | 15g
  • ¼ teaspoon salt | 3g
  • ¼ cup water or chicken broth | 60g

Notes

  1. Dumpling fillings vary wildly from recipe to recipe, region to region, and from one type to another. Feel free to try using a different ground meat or a mix of ground meats including roughly chopped raw shrimp.
  2. The bamboo imparts some flavor, but mostly texture. If you want more texture, try adding more diced bamboo shoot, water chestnuts, or wood ear mushrooms. Other common additions include rehydrated and minced black mushrooms (aka shiitake), minced Napa cabbage, or minced baby bok choy. Try adding approximately ¼ cup of any of these at the first step.

Instructions

  1. In a large heatproof bowl, combine scallion, cilantro, and ginger.
  2. Heat oil in a small pan until it bubbles vigorously when a bamboo chopstick or skewer is inserted (~300°F/150°C).
  3. Pour the hot oil over the aromatics.
  4. Add ground pork, bamboo, shaoxing wine, oyster sauce, and salt (½ tsp) to the bowl. Mix thoroughly.
  5. Mix ingredients thoroughly using chopsticks, a wooden spoon, or your fingers. Alternatively, use a stand mixer with the flat beater attachment on low speed for about 45-60 seconds. Mix until the mixture turns into a paste-like consistency.
  6. Incorporate water/broth (½ cup) into the mixture by stirring in the same direction until fully absorbed, resulting in a cohesive “paste” in approximately 30-45 seconds.
  7. Wrap the prepared baozi dough around the filling, using approximately 20-25g of dough and a rounded tablespoon of filling (~15g) for each, yielding about 24 baozi.
  8. Coat the cooking surface of a large skillet with enough oil. Place the baozi in the pan with some spacing between them, similar to how you would arrange cinnamon buns. The pan should be off heat at this point.
  9. Cover the prepared baozi and let them proof for about 15 minutes.
  10. Cook the baozi over medium-low heat for a few minutes until the bottoms begin to brown. Then, add about ¼ cup of water, cover immediately to trap steam, and continue cooking until almost all of the water has evaporated.
  11. Finish cooking with the lid off until the bottoms are golden brown, ensuring that all water has evaporated. Garnish with minced scallion and sesame seeds if you wish. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce or plain, however you like!

More information about cooking pan fried baozi.

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