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Mix 1C of warm water(warm to touch) with 1TBsp sugar and 1/2TBsp Active Dry Yeast- This step helps the yeast dissolve and mix better in the next step.
Add the rest of the dough ingredients and knead till smooth and elastic. "3 clean" is the goal. Your hand should be clean, the dough looks clean(smooth), and it will pull away from the bowl(bowl's clean).The dough should pull away from the bowl easily and shouldn't be sticky. If it's too sticky(summer humidity might change the proportion), add 1/4C flour until the dough is soft, smooth and not sticky.Cover with a wet towel and rest for 10 mins. (Full video can be found on IG TV @CHOOCHOOCACHEW)You can also do this in a stand-up mixer with a dough hook- about 6 minutes.
While the dough rests, make the filling.
Add sliced ginger to 1C of water and let it rest.
Beat 1lb of ground pork with a fork until it's sticky, lumping together and not crumbly.
Mix in 3TBsp Soy Sauce, 2TBsp Corn Starch, 1tsp Salt, 1TBsp Toasted Sesame Oil, 1/8tsp white pepper, 1/8tsp five spice.
Remove the ginger from the water. Add the ginger-infused water to the pork mixture, roughly 1/4C at a time, beating the pork with a fork. Making sure all the moisture is absorbed before adding the next 1/4C. Repeat until all the water is absorbed.(You can also use a stand-up mixer with a mix paddle for making the pork mixture)
Add the 3C of chopped scallions to the pork mixture. Keep in the fridge if you're not ready to fold right away.
Line a steaming basket with parchment liners. If your liners don't have holes in them, make sure you poke some!
Now we roll and fold. Separate the dough into 16 portions, each one weighing about 45g.
It's easier to roll a round dough if you start with a round dough. Dust a little flour on the counter to prevent sticking. Flatten a dough and roll with a rolling pin from the outside in, with your left hand turning the dough, roll again and turn. Till the dough has turned into a circular shape with thinner skins around and thick in the center. About 5 inch in diameter.(It's OK if the dough is not a perfect round!)
Now fold. Hold the dough in one hand, add the filling- how much depends on how well you can fold. Start small and work your way up.With the other hand, pinch the outskirts of the dough and gather them together. It's honestly easier if you watch the video above. Place the baos in the steamer, with at least 2" gap between each one. (My 10" bamboo steamers fits about 5 baos per tier)Repeat until you've finished with all the baos.
Put the lid on the baos, and let the baos rest for 20 minutes. (Summer, 75+ degrees) 45h in winter (75 and below)The longer you rest your baos the bigger they will grow and the more air bubbles. They will grow bigger when they are steamed.
With a pot which you can stack your steamers on, bring 2" water to a rapid boil.
Stack the rested baos in the steamer on the boiling water.
Steam: 10 minutes for two stacks, 15 for 3 stacks, 20 for 4 stacks. This is just a rule of thumb, your actual steam time may vary.Check if your bao is done: poke it. If it springs back, feels bouncy, it's done. If it's soft and leaves a mark, steam them longer!
Eat the baos while they're HOT. Keep in the fridge for a week or freeze them for up to 3 months! Reheat the baos by steaming them.