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pork buns

Tuesday. 12. 6. 2011.

I vaguely remember seeing the episode of Martha with Momofuku’s David Chang making his signature pork buns. Here’s the recipe on Epicurious.


After reading Lucky Peach, I promptly ordered a copy of the Momofuku cookbook as well as the Milk Bar cookbook.

The plan was to make the pork buns for when Fredrik came home from his tour. Unfortunately the guys at work forgot to save me some pork belly so I opted to use the leftover suckling pig from our pig roast. It worked out just fine.

I substituted the pork drippings required in the dough recipe with olive oil.

olive oil instead of pork drippings

I think the yeast I’ve got is a little out of date. They’re a bit slow to activate but they did their job at the end of the day.

flour + yeast

This dough is not rolled out like a regular bread dough. Instead of using flour to prevent the dough from sticking, oil is used.

A chef at my aunt’s restaurant told me that flour would make the dough tough whereas oil would make it soft and smooth.

after first rise

50 balls of dough

Each bun needed a piece of parchment paper so that it had something to rest on during steaming. I’m thinking that I’ll get a cheese clothe like my mom has for her steamer. It wasn’t so exciting to cut 50 pieces of paper.

50 pieces of parchment for buns

last rise

The buns turned out great. Their texture is a bit like a mantou which is a sort of Chinese bread.

Making these buns brought back memories of making mantou and mandarin rolls with my mom. When I was really little, I ate all the skin off the mantou. I’d get told off by my grandmother but really, it was just a pretend telling off.

One of my favourite kinds of mantou is the deep fried mantou that you eat with sweet condensed milk. When I was 10, I went to Beijing with my mom to visit my grandparents. My grandfather worked for the Shangri La hotel as a project manager so they lived in the apartment complex at the World Trade Centre in Beijing. There was a restaurant we went to that served the deep fried mantou and deep fried silver thread rolls (You’re gonna have to look that one up. It’s another type of Chinese bread). They were so good.

buns for pork buns

The Momofuku cookbook assures me that the buns freeze very well. I made them on the Friday night and just reheated some in my microwave steamer on the Sunday night when we ate them for dinner. They were SO good.

I made some stir fried savoy cabbage. I forgot to make the pickled cucumbers but fresh slices worked just as well. It was like a mix between pork buns and peking duck. I think I’m going to have to fry up a duck breast at some point in time for the remainder of the buns.

pork bun

pork buns

Since I didn’t end up making pork belly as I had planned, I took home some pork skin and made crackling on the side. I’ve got some practising to do with crackling (they’re either underdone or blackened).

pork skin for crackling

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