Thursday, March 31, 2011

Chives and Tofu Pan-Fried Buns

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Chinese food showcases chives as a star ingredient. Mature chives have fairly pungent, garlic-y, onion-y flavors -- they really stink up the fridge. I had some chives left over and had to use them quickly so I can stop smelling them all the time. So I made these delicious chives tofu pan-fried buns.

To make these savory buns, you'll need --
  • 2 cups chives, finely chopped
  • 4 blocks five-spice flavored baked tofu, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger juice
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • pinch of salt 
  • canola oil
  • 1 recipe of Chinese sweet yeast dough, below
For the Chinese sweet yeast dough, you'll need --
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon soybean powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 teaspoon active yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • pinch of salt
To make the dough, combine flour, soybean powder, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. Dissolve sugar and active yeast in water. Combine wet ingredients with dry ingredients. Knead lightly until dough is smooth, about 5 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside  for 15 to 20 minutes.

In the meantime, combine all ingredients for the filling. Set aside. Heat up a teaspoon of canola oil in a non-stick skillet fitted with a lid.

Punch down the dough and divide into 20 equal pieces. Roll out one piece and add about a tablespoon of filling in the middle. Gather dough edges into pleats and twist. Place bun into hot pan immediately. If you cannot cook buns immediately, freeze them right away. Allowing them to sit on the counter will make them soggy.

Place about 5 buns inside the pan with plenty of space between them. Allow the buns to sizzle in the pan for a couple of minutes. Add about 1/4 inch of water into the pan. Cover pan immediately with lid. Allow buns to steam for 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the lid and let any remaining water evaporate completely. Buns should be easy to remove from the pan once water evaporates. The bottom should be golden brown and crispy. If not, add more water and repeat the process. Serve with dipping sauce of your choice.

These buns are pretty darn tasty. Sure, it's kind of a lot of work, but so good! Chances are, you'll have plenty left over. They can easily be frozen for another day. And you'll be happy that they are there when you don't have time to cook.

1 comment:

  1. Boy these look amazing!!! Jut oozing with flavor - I'd love a few!