Asian Steamed Buns

Aroma Rice Cooker Asian Steamed Buns

I pride myself in trying to find new and inspiring yet simple dishes to make in the Aroma Rice Cookers, but sometimes a customer question really makes me question the extent of creativity I think I possess.

Last week Aroma received an inquiry on Asian style steamed buns. After a few hours of recipe searching and YouTube video streaming, I was surprised that I hadn’t thought of featuring this dish on our blog. Every recipe and video I saw used an Asian style steamer inserted on top of a pot of boiling water. The steam function in the Aroma Rice Cooker makes this process a snap!

The trick was to figure out which dough recipe to use…water or milk, and which type of buns…filled or unfilled. After compiling recipes, I decided to try three different versions of dough. The important part was to use the right ingredients and allow enough time for the dough to rise; achieving a fluffy, evenly steamed bun. The dough made with water created very dense and chewy buns. The quick rise method was on the hard side and didn’t live up to its name since it had trouble rising. The last dough was made with milk and allowed ample time to rise, giving me the perfect buns I remember once eating in a dim sum restaurant.

Since I spent so much of my effort in perfecting the “bun” part of this recipe, I decided to go easy on the filling. I bought a refrigerated pulled BBQ beef entree and spiced it up with some sautéed onion, celery and garlic . The beauty of this dish lies in the fact that once you’ve perfected your bun dough, any meat, vegetarian, or even sweet filling works.

Below you will find my tested and tweaked recipe for Asian Steamed Buns.

Makes 12 Buns

For the dough:
1 tbsp yeast
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup milk
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp baking powder

For the filling:
Anything you’d like, have fun with it!

Start by making the dough. Mix together the yeast, sugar and flour and allow to sit for 30 minutes.

Add in all remaining ingredients, except the baking powder, adjusting the amount of flour to achieve an elastic dough after kneading it for about 10 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm draft free area for 3-4 hrs.

Remove dough from the bowl, sprinkle with baking powder, an reknead a few more minutes until incorporated. Form dough into a long log and divide into 12 parts. Shape each piece into a ball and let sit while you set up your Aroma rice cooker.

Add water to the three cup level in your Aroma rice cooker. Cover the steam tray with foil or baking paper, leaving a few of the steam holes uncovered on each side, so the steam can circulate while cooking (I was able to fit 3-4 buns on the tray at once, making sure there was enough space between the buns to allow them to expand while steaming).

Roll each ball into a thin flat circle leaving more dough in the center of each circle to be able to achieve the traditional  folds in the finished product. Place a tablespoon of filling in the center of each circle and start pulling up the sides, twisting as you stretch the dough. Finish each bun by twisting the top to make sure it’s properly sealed, ensuring no filling will escape during the steaming process.

Place in steam tray and allow to steam for 20 minutes for filled buns or  15 minutes for unfilled. Enjoy!


Over to You
What’s your version of steamed buns? Share and inspire us!

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