I used to think that the only difference between chinese bun and western bread is the steam vs bake. Big wrong assumption! No wonder when I used my usual bread to make bun (by steaming), the bun (or steam bread) turned out rock hard. Haha.
Bread uses high protein flour while bun uses low protein flour. So much I understand at this point, sorry.
But that didn't stop me from trying out Gina's Mantou recipe, from Kitchen Capers. I put in my method of making this without a bread machine.
Pardon the blur photo cos I made this at night and the lighting ain't ideal for photo.
500g HK Flour (I used all purpose flour)
100g castor sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1.5 tsp yeast
1. Put the dry ingredients into the mixing bowl. And mix well before adding the water.
2. Mix with a spatula until a dough is form.
3. Put on a lightly flour worktop and knead until smooth.
4. I left it to rest for 30min though I am not sure if this step is necessary.
5. Flatten the dough and divide it into equal pieces.
6. I flatten the pieces then roll it up like swiss roll. Set aside to proof for another 30 mins.
7. Steam over high heat for 8 mins.
8. Serve warm.
- I do not have HK flour, so I use the unbleached plain flour. That's why my mantou ain't white like those you buy from outside.
- It is soft and fluffy when warm, though not as fluffy as bread. I said this to manage expectation :-)
Anyway, this is much easier to make... less time consuming compare to the bread which must knead till thin membrane stage.