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baked char sui bao with barbecue pork filling
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BBQ Pork Buns (Baked Char Siu Bao)

Homemade BBQ Pork Buns (Baked Char Siu Bao) with marinated and grilled pork tenderloin and fluffy homemade roll dough make a traditional Chinese dim sum meal at home.
Course: Pork
Cuisine: Chinese
Servings: 12 Buns
Author: Barbara Bakes LLC

Ingredients

CHAR SIU (CANTONESE BBQ PORK)

  • 2 pork fillet/tenderloin mine weighed 1.8 pounds*
  • 4 large cloves of garlic crushed
  • 1 teaspoon ginger grated
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 1 ½ tablespoons maltose or substitute honey
  • 1 ½ tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce or substitute dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon oyster sauce omit for shellfish allergies
  • 1 tablespoon shaoxing cooking wine
  • ½ teaspoon ground white or black pepper
  • pinch of salt
  • ½ teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon pillar box red food colouring I used about ⅛ teaspoon gel food coloring

BAKED CHAR SIU BAO (Chinese BBQ PORK BUN) FILLING

  • 12 ounces char siu finely diced
  • 2 green onions finely sliced
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon corn flour
  • ¼ cup chicken stock
  • ½ tablespoon vegetable oil

DOUGH

  • 2 ¼ teaspoons 1 package active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg slightly beaten
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Egg wash: 1 egg beaten with a dash of water

Instructions

  • If necessary, trim the pork loin to remove fat and tendon. Slice lengthwise so you have four long pieces, then cut in half. By cutting the pork into smaller pieces to marinate, you will end up with more flavorsome char siu. If you want to leave the pork in one piece you can do this as well.
  • Place the meat in a container for marinating. Combine all of the remaining ingredients in a separate bowl and mix well to combine. Microwave the maltose in for a few seconds to make it easier to work with. Cover the pork well with ¾ of the marinade mixture. Marinate for a minimum of 4 hours, or up to overnight. Turn the pork several times for even marinating
  • Place the reserved ¼ of the marinade, covered, in the fridge. You will use this as a baste when cooking the pork.
  • Preheat a girl to medium. Place the marinated pork loin on the grill and cook for approximately 15 minutes, until cooked through (145ºF), turning frequently and basting occasionally with the reserved marinade. Watch it closely to avoid burning. 
  • Dice the char siu to make the bao filling. 
  • BAKED CHAR SIU BAO (CANTONESE BBQ PORK BUN)
  • FILLING
  • Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet. Add the diced char siu and stir, then add the spring onions and cook for 1 minute. 
  • Add the hoisin sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil and stir fry for one minute.
  • In a small bowl, combine the corn flour and stock together and then add to the pork mixture. Stir well and cook until the mixture thickens, 1 to 2 minutes. 
  • Transfer the mixture to a bowl to cool. 

BUN DIRECTIONS:

  • Lightly grease a large mixing bowl for rising the dough.  
  • Place the sugar and warm water in a small bowl and mix until the sugar has dissolved. Sprinkle the yeast on top and leave it for 10 to 15 minutes until it becomes all frothy.
  • Sift the flour into a large bowl. Add the yeast mixture, egg, oil, and salt and stir. Bring the flour mixture together with your hands. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for approximately 10 minutes. The dough should be smooth and slightly elastic.
  • Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Leave to rise until it is double in size. This will take 1 to 2 hours, depending on weather conditions.
  • Preheat the oven to 400º F. 
  • Once the dough has doubled in size, knock it back with your fist and divide into 12 portions. Shape them into round balls. Use a rolling pin to roll the balls flat, about 2 inches in diameter. Then pick each piece of dough up and gently pull the edges to enlarge to about 3 inches in diameter. This keeps the dough slightly thicker in the center, which prevents them from splitting on top as they cook.
  • Place a heaping tablespoon of filling in the center of each dough circle. Then gather the edges and seal your bun closed on top. Place the bun seal side down on a baking tray. 
  • Continue with the remaining dough. Once all buns are complete, brush them with egg wash. 
  • Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Notes

*Made twice as much Char Siu as called for in the bun recipe, so I doubled the filling ingredients and froze half to make another day.