Our Daring Cooks’ December 2011 hostess is Sara from Belly Rumbles! Sara chose awesome Char Sui Bao as our challenge, where we made the buns, Char Sui, and filling from scratch – delicious!
Another chance at some Chinese cooking this month. This is a two part challenge. First we had to cook the Char Sui (a barbequed pork) and then we use the leftovers to create Char Sui Bao ( a filled bun ). I love both of these so it sounded like a fun challenge.
The first part of the recipe was making the Char Sui. It was a very simple recipe. You simply marinate some pork tenderloin and cook in the oven or on the grill. Since I am still pretending it is not winter here in Minnesota I decided to grill the pork. The recipe does tell you to allow the pork to marinate from 4 hours to overnight. I was only able to do 4 hours. The pork tasted very good but I do see how it could have benefited from a longer marination time. I made a bunch of this pork and loved using some of the leftovers for sandwiches.
A few days later I decided to tackle the Char Sui Bao with the leftovers. The challenge provided recipes for baked or steamed. I love these little buns but have never had them baked. Not really sure how authentic a baked bao is but since I didn't really have the equipment to easily steam a bunch I decided to try them baked. The dough is a yeast dough but only takes a few hours rising time. They are real simple to put together - just roll out a small circle of dough and use it to wrap a small amount of pork filling. I loved these - I won't say I liked them better than steamed but they were different - much more like actual bread than a steam bun. Both good - just in different ways.
This was a great challenge - my only problem is how to get the red color out of my towels and off my cutting boards :) If you would like to try out these recipes on your own check out the Daring Cooks recipe archive.