Friday, June 17, 2011

Pan-fried leek buns 韭菜水煎包

The weather is getting warmer and warmer. Summer is in the air. The vegetables in my in-laws' garden are growing so fast that we can't keep up our speed on consuming them. Leek is one of them. This makes me think of a common street food back in home, the pan-fried buns. It took a little time to make, because we had to wait for the dough to rise, which made the dinner time a little later than usual on this week night, but it's all worth it. The moment when we dig in, oh, it tasted so good! I have to say when flour meets fat (oil, butter or cheese), magic happens!

Ingredients (makes about 16):

  • Starter dough 100 g*
  • All-purpose flour 300 g
  • Sugar 20 g
  • Salt 1/8 tsp
  • Warm water 150 g
  • Olive oil (or cooking oil) 20 g
  • Instant yeast 1/2 tsp
* Starter dough: Mix all-purpose flour 120 g, water 80 g and yeast 1/2 tsp together the night before. Put it in the refrigerator to let the dough rise slowly. Use it the next day. Freeze the excess and defrost in the refrigerator the night before. Or soak in warm water to defrost before use. Do not use microwave to defrost. It may be too hot and cook the dough.

Filling (similar to the filling for the leek box):
  • Leek 450 g (1 lb.)
  • Ground pork 300 g (10 oz.)
  • Vermicelli 1 bundle
  • Dried shrimps 3 Tbsp
  • Season with salt and 2 Tbsp soy sauce


1. Mix everything for the dough together. Cover with a dam cloth and let rise until double in size (about 1 hr).

2. Divide into 16 pieces. Roll it into a 5-inch-wide circle. Put a few Tbsp filling in it and seal the edges.

3. Put 2 Tbsp cooking oil in a non-stick pan. Turn on the stove on low heat. Line up the buns in pan. Make sure the bottom of each bun gets coated with oil.

4. Turn up the heat to medium heat. Fry the dumplings for 2 minutes. 

5. Pour water to about half inch high in pan. Cover and cook for 10-12 minutes or until the water is gone.

6. Turn down the heat and cook until all water is gone. The bottom should be golden brown but not burned. If desire, sprinkle some sesame seeds before serve.

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