It may be that the Chinese have more wrapped dishes than other cultures. So many buns and dumplings made with completely different wrappers and fillings. It would probably take a lifetime to catalogue all of them, but what a wonderful chore.
Chinese sausage dates back almost 2000 years. The technique described in writings from that period are still followed today. The numbers and different types of sausages throughout China are legion. However, when it comes to Lap Cheung Bao, the sausages used are Cantonese and made of pork. Lap Cheong in Cantonese translates to “dried sausage”.
These buns are made with a standard mantou dough and the classic Lap Cheung Chinese sausage. The sausages are wrapped in several different ways. They can be wrapped with the sausage whole, then steamed (similar to a hot dog). They can be cut in half and again wrapped in the dough. Other approaches are to cut up the sausage into smaller pieces and then wrap them in dough in the form of a bao. I prefer this approach. The sausage pieces can be marinated and formed into the bao buns. But the interior stuffing is always simple, Lap Cheung Chinese sausage. These are delicious especially, in my opinion, when the sausage is marinaded.
The recipe below is my take on this wonderful bun.
Chinese Sausage Buns, Lap Cheung Bao
- ½ cup Water
- ¼ cup Milk
- 4 tsp Honey
- 1 tsp Instant yeast
- 1½ tsp melted butter
- 1⅓ tsp peanut or similar oil
- 2 cups King Arthur All-purpose Flour https://www.amazon.com/King-Arthur-Purpose-Unbleached-Flour/dp/B004G7TQI0/ref=sr_1_10?crid=3SWH0LONBJXZN&keywords=king+arthur+all+purpose+flour&qid=1648422876&s=grocery&sprefix=king+arthur+all+%2Cgrocery%2C88&sr=1-10
- 1 TBSP Cabber Girl Cornstarch https://www.amazon.com/Clabber-Girl-Corn-Starch-Vegetarian/dp/B005PZLFPE/ref=sr_1_4?crid=1RMKVJY2YENWI&keywords=cornstarch&qid=1648422804&s=grocery&sprefix=cornstarch%2Cgrocery%2C97&sr=1-4
- ¼ tsp Kosher salt
- ⅛ tsp Clabber Girl Baking Soda https://www.amazon.com/Clabber-Girl-Baking-Soda-Deodorizing/dp/B07FCVXJ2W/ref=sr_1_2?crid=38241EV19FIHD&keywords=clabber+girl+baking+soda&qid=1648422969&s=grocery&sprefix=clabber+girl+baking+soda%2Cgrocery%2C73&sr=1-2
Lap Cheung Sausage and Marinade
- 3 TBSP Lee Kun Kee Oyster Sauce https://www.amazon.com/Lee-Kum-Kee-Oyster-Premium/dp/B00KO3F1X4/ref=sr_1_4?crid=A4MSU9ER5NJ2&keywords=oyster+sauce&qid=1648423014&s=grocery&sprefix=oyster+sauce%2Cgrocery%2C90&sr=1-4
- 3 TBSP Kikkoman Soy Sauce https://www.amazon.com/Kikkoman-Soy-Sauce-10-oz/dp/B0002YB3YG/ref=sr_1_8?crid=1T1VXG964HGXY&keywords=soy+sauce&qid=1648423071&s=grocery&sprefix=soy+sause%2Cgrocery%2C78&sr=1-8
- 1 TBSP Kadoya Sesame oil https://www.amazon.com/Kadoya-Pure-Sesame-Fluid-Ounce/dp/B002HMN6SC/ref=sr_1_4?crid=2ISZWE9AWDFRE&keywords=sesame+oil&qid=1648423104&s=grocery&sprefix=sesame+oil%2Cgrocery%2C98&sr=1-4
- 10 Lap Cheung Sausages
- 15+ Small square sheets of parchment paper
- In a small bowl, mix the water, milk, honey and yeast. Mix it well and let the yeast bloom, about 15-20 minutes.
- Once the yeast blooms, mix in the butter and peanut oil.
- In a large bowl, add the flour, cornstarch, salt and baking soda. Mix well with a whick.
- Pour the flour mixture into the yeast liquid using a stand mixture.
- Mix until the you form a dough ball.
- Remove the dough from the bowl onto a floured surface and knead well until the shinny dough ball
- Coat the ball with a thin coating of peanut oil (or similar). Coat a bowl and place the dough ball in the bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough proof until twice the size, about 1 ½ to 2 hours.
Lap Cheung Sausage and Marinade
- Place the oyster sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil into a small bowl and mix it well.
- Cut the sausages in half the long way. Then cut them across into pieces about 1 ½ inches long. Place the pieces in a plastic bag and add the marinade. Let the sausages marinade at least 30 minutes.
Assembly and cook
- Take the dough and place on a floured board and deflate. Roll the dough into a long cylinder and cut them into ¾ – 1 ounce portions. Cover these portions with a moist towel.
- Take one of the portions, place on the board and roll it into a circle about 5 inches in diameter.*
- Place the dough circle in the palm of your hand and place 4-5 pieces of the marinaded sausage on the dough circle.
- Bring up the edges and pleat them making a typical bao bun.
- Place each bun on a square of parchment paper, then into a steamer.
- Steam the buns for 20 minutes. They will increase in size and thickness as well.
- Once the buns are steamed, turn off the heat and let the buns sit for 5 minutes.
- Remove the buns and serve.