Jumbo Siopao


Jumbo Siopao

Back in the Philippines this type of steamed bun is one of my favourite comfort meal, when I am hungry and want some quick and easy fast food this would me one of my few choices. So what is special with this jumbo siopao compared to the others like siopao asado and siopao bola bola, well it is made out of different meats like chicken, pork (char siu and Chinese sausage) and a salted duck egg, it is huge (hence the name) and very satisfying. Usually served with hot sauce and/or hoisin sauce, one of it is enough to fill that hunger.

Steamed buns or siopao is definitely popular in China but others might not know that this Asian steamed bun is also popular in the Philippines, I guess if there is a McDonalds or Jollibee in an area a siopao vendor would not be so far away. Like I said there are a lot of siopao vendors in the Philippines and my favourites are Henlin, Ma Mon Luk and Kowloon House. On those 3 shops its only Kowloon House who sells the jumbo pao but there are a lot of shops who copied them and from my experience its only Kowloon shop who makes this siopao spot on, the others I tried are nowhere near in terms of taste and quality (I am not sure of what the scenario today, the last time I tried this was a decade ago).

Now that I am nearly 8000km’s away from those shops the only means that I can have this is to recreate them at home. By using my successful siopao dough recipe and the additional ingredients I know of, here is how it’s done.

Ingredients (Steamed Buns)

3 cups dumpling flour + 1/2 cup for dusting
200 ml warm water
1/2 cup + 2 tsp white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp shortening or vegetable oil (use shortening to make it whiter in colour)
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tbsp active dry yeast
1/4 cup lukewarm water

Ingredients (Filling)

400g finely chopped or minced chicken thighs
150g char siu
2 salted duck eggs, quartered
1 pc Chinese sausage, sliced into 8 pcs
2 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tbsp cornstarch
4 tsp brown sugar
4 tsp sesame oil
salt

Ingredients (Water for Steaming)

water, for steaming
1 tbsp of vinegar per litre of water, for steaming

Method (Filling)

1. Mix all filling ingredients together except for the char siu, duck eggs and Chinese sausage. Set aside.

Method (Steamed Buns)

1. Mix together yeast, 2 tsp sugar, and 1/4 cup lukewarm water. Set aside in a warm location for 30 minutes.
2. Mix remaining ingredients except for the baking powder then knead dough until dough surface is smooth and texture is elastic; occasionally dust the board with dumpling flour. Place in a greased bowl then place in a warm location, set aside for 2 hours. After two hours the size would be doubled.
3. Deflate dough then spread on floured board. Add the baking powder evenly then knead for 5 minutes.
4. Divide into 8 pieces then roll them thin, place a 50g of the mixed mixture in the middle, a slice of char siu, a slice of Chinese sausage and a piece of quartered egg. Seal them on top, place buns in a greased paper. Do with the remaining dough and filling. Set aside in a warm location for 30 minutes.
5. Prepare your steamer by pouring water and vinegar. Vinegar will make sure your buns are white.
6. Place buns into steamer container then steam siopao for 30-40 minutes.

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21 thoughts on “Jumbo Siopao

  1. These do look filling. I’m impressed that you made the buns yourself. They turned out so good looking which I imagine is challenging with stuffing them, and I bet they are delicious.

  2. These look incredible. My only attempt at steamed pork buns were a complete disaster, but how I would love to be able to make them at home. I can’t imagine anything better!

    • Yes All purpose would do but it will give a different texture and colour compared to the dumpling flour. I used them before but when this was introduced to me I never used AP ever since in making steamed buns. This will make your pao similar texture to what you get in Asian restaurants or dumpling shops and you can find them in Asian and/or Chinese groceries.

      • I have been looking for a long, long time for a white siopao recipe and I am so happy that at last I’ve found it. I made siopao before coz I attended a culinary lessons but I was looking for a white dough siopao. And your Jumbo Siopao recipe is the best as I see it. IT’S PERFECT. But where can I find the dumpling flour and this is the first I have heard this kind of flour. I’m living here at Clovis, California. Is this available in the grocery or in Asian store. Any particular brand of chinese rice wine coz there are lots of them. Please help coz I am so eager to make it ASAP.
        Likewise, your cassava cake is the best too among the recipes I have encountered in the internet. I made it and my whole family and friends love it so much. THANK YOU SO SO MUCH FOR SHARING YOUR RECIPES TO ALL OF US.
        MAY GOD BLESS YOU ALWAYS!

    • There is a workaround and this is what we usually use when we dont have a steamer in the Philippines. You need a really large and wide pot, place an empty tin can or a heat resistant ceramic mug in the middle, you might need 2 or 3 with the same height. Fill the pot with water until its half the height of the tin can/mug, make sure you add water to the tin can or mug as well to keep it from floating. Now place a heat proof plate upside down so it does not collect any liquid. Bring water to a boil then place your buns above the upside down plate.

      • Thanks! I found out that there is a large Chinatown area here in Buenos Aires, so I would really love to try my hand at some dumplings since I can probably get my hands on the ingredients. I’ll have to experiment some with this steamer method.

  3. Huge fan of steamed buns, but have never made them myself. I could definitely eat a few of yours. They look delicious!

    • I buy them in Asian Grocery here in New Zealand, definitely you can find it in Chinese shops anywhere in the world just ask for “dumpling flour” instead of regular ones. Before I used to make siopao using All Purpose Flour and I am not happy with the texture, its like the ones we can buy in street vendors, but one time I asked our Asian Grocery whether is there a special flour used for steamed buns and they told me to use “dumpling flour” and showed me the product. Since then I never went back using all purpose flour, I’m sure its made of the same ingredients but theres something in it that makes the texture similar to what you get from Henlin or Kowloon.

  4. Pingback: Quick Meals with Mince | Wholesome Cook

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