Many of you have asked to know more about our delicious dishes. Starting this month we will be sharing with you, our beloved customers, recipes of dishes not commonly featured in typical Chinese restaurants. In fact, every item will be for food we actually make right in our own home kitchen! The first item we would like to introduce to you is a traditional, flour-based staple known as mantou (饅頭), otherwise known as Chinese steamed buns. Today, we will show you a healthy variation that makes us proud and happy to be Chinese-Canadians.
- 400g whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp yeast
- 30ml lukewarm water
- 200ml almond milk, soymilk or water
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 40g maple syrup, honey or brown sugar
- 2g salt
- Combine the yeast with lukewarm water and wait until the mixture becomes bubbly and slightly milky.
- Mix the flour, baking powder, sweetening agents, and salt into a mixer. Turn on the machine and add the activated yeast and milk slowly. *Remember to only add more after the previous batch is completely mixed into the dough* Add the oil in the same manner.
- Knead and mix the dough for around 15 minutes until a moist, soft, non-sticky dough ball is formed. Pay attention to the texture and adjust dry/wet ingredients as needed.
- Cover the dough with a dampened cloth or plastic wrap and set aside to rest for 45 to 60 minutes until it doubles in size.
- Put the dough back in the machine and knead for about 5 more minutes until smooth. You can also knead by hand if you wish.
- Flour your work station and divide the dough into two.
- Roll each half of the dough into a long log about 1.5 inch in diameter and flatten the log.
- Brush some water on the flattened dough and, again, starting from one side of the dough, roll the dough towards the end to form a log.
- Remove the ends of the log and cut the main body into pieces the size of your choice, Repeat the previous 3 steps for the other half of the dough.
- Place each piece on individual wax papers.
- Let the dough rest again for about half an hour.
- Put the dough into a steamer and steam for 12 to 15 minutes.
Mantou can be enjoyed as is, used as a substitute for sandwich bread, pan fried in slices with vegan butter, or further transformed into whatever suits your fancy. One of our favorite ways this summer is to enjoy with a generous spread of homemade blueberry jam. Of course, they can also be part of a healthy meal combined with one of our dishes. We invite you to visit us soon to make your own mantou sandwich using one of our stir-fry specials. Check out our menu.