Chinese Butter Bun Recipe: Baking Fluffy Buns That You Can’t Resist – Seaco Online
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Chinese Butter Bun Recipe: Baking Fluffy Buns That You Can’t Resist

If you want a delicious and unique breakfast or tea-time treat, Chinese butter buns are a must-try. These soft and fluffy buns are filled with a rich and creamy butter filling that is sure to satisfy your cravings. They are also surprisingly easy to make at home, so you can enjoy them whenever you like.

A pair of hands kneading dough for Chinese butter buns, with a bowl of flour and butter in the background

To make Chinese butter buns, you will need a few key ingredients such as bread flour, yeast, sugar, milk, and of course, butter. The dough is made by combining these ingredients and kneading until it is smooth and elastic. The filling is a simple mixture of butter, sugar, and milk that is cooked until it is thick and creamy.

Once the dough and filling are prepared, the buns are shaped and filled before being baked until golden brown. You can enjoy them warm from the oven or store them for later. If you're feeling adventurous, you can even try adding seafood to the filling for a unique twist on this classic recipe.

Key Takeaways

  • Chinese butter buns are a delicious and unique breakfast or tea-time treat.
  • The dough is made from simple ingredients such as bread flour, yeast, sugar, and milk.
  • The filling is a mixture of butter, sugar, and milk that can be enhanced with seafood.

Ingredients Overview

A table with ingredients: flour, sugar, milk, butter, yeast. A mixing bowl, measuring cups, and spoons. A rolling pin and a baking tray

When it comes to making Chinese Butter Buns, there are three main components to consider: the dough, the tangzhong, and the filling/topping. Here is an overview of the ingredients you'll need for each component:

Dough Ingredients

To make the dough for your Chinese Butter Buns, you'll need:

  • Bread flour
  • Cake flour
  • Instant dry yeast
  • Milk powder
  • Caster sugar
  • Salt
  • Water (about 36C/97F)
  • Milk (about 36C/97F)
  • Unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • Whisked egg, for brushing the dough

The bread flour and cake flour will give your buns a soft, fluffy texture, while the instant dry yeast will help them rise. The milk powder and caster sugar will add richness and sweetness, respectively, and the salt will balance out the flavours. The water and milk should be warm to help activate the yeast, and the unsalted butter will add richness and flavour.

Tangzhong Ingredients

Tangzhong is a cooked mixture of flour and water that is added to the dough to make it extra soft and fluffy. To make the tangzhong for your Chinese Butter Buns, you'll need:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Whole milk

The all-purpose flour and whole milk will be cooked together to make the tangzhong. Be sure to let it cool before adding it to the dough.

Filling and Topping

The filling and topping for your Chinese Butter Buns is where you can get creative. You can use sweet or savoury fillings, or a combination of both. Here are some ideas:

  • Sweet: condensed milk, chocolate chips, fruit preserves, or even fresh fruit like strawberries or peaches.
  • Savoury: barbecued pork, vegetables, or seafood like shrimp or crab meat.

For the topping, you can brush the buns with melted butter or heavy cream before baking, or sprinkle them with sea salt or sesame seeds for extra flavour and texture.

Remember, the key to making delicious Chinese Butter Buns is using high-quality ingredients and taking your time to let the dough rise properly. With a little patience and practice, you'll be able to make perfect buns every time.

Preparing the Dough

A pair of hands kneading dough on a floured surface, surrounded by ingredients like flour, butter, and sugar. A mixing bowl and measuring cups sit nearby

To make Chinese butter buns, you need to prepare the dough first. Follow these simple steps to make the perfect dough:

Mixing the Ingredients

To make the dough, you will need to mix bread flour, cake flour, instant dry yeast, milk powder, caster sugar, salt, water, milk, and butter. You can mix all the ingredients in a bread maker or knead by hand. If you are using a stand mixer, mix the ingredients on low speed for 10 minutes.

Kneading the Dough

After mixing the ingredients, knead the dough for 15 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic. You can check if the dough is ready by performing the windowpane test. Take a small piece of dough and stretch it out thin enough to see through it. If the dough stretches without breaking and you can see light through it, then it's ready.

Proofing the Dough

Once the dough is ready, it's time to let it proof. Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover it with a damp cloth. Let it proof for 1 hour at room temperature. The dough should double in size.

After proofing the dough, punch it down to release the air. Knead it for a minute and divide it into 12 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball and place it on a baking tray. Cover the buns with a damp cloth and let them proof for another 30 minutes.

If you want to add seafood to your Chinese butter buns, you can use prawns or crab meat. Mix the seafood in with the dough before kneading it. Make sure to cook the seafood before adding it to the dough.

That's it! You now have the perfect dough for your Chinese butter buns.

Shaping and Filling

A pair of hands shaping and filling a Chinese butter bun dough with a savory filling, ready for steaming

Creating the Bun Shape

To create the shape of the butter bun, you will need to divide the dough into equal portions. Roll each portion into an oval shape, leaving the centre slightly thicker than the edges. Fold the oval in half, with the thinner edges overlapping in the middle. Press down on the overlapping edges to seal the bun.

If you want to make a milk butter bun, which is a variation of the butter bun, you can brush the surface of the bun with milk before baking. This will give the bun a shiny, golden-brown appearance.

Adding the Filling

The filling is what makes the butter bun unique. You can use a variety of fillings, including sweet and savoury options. For a traditional butter bun, you can use a mixture of butter and sugar. Simply soften the butter and mix it with sugar until it forms a smooth paste. Spread the mixture onto the centre of the bun before folding it in half.

If you want to try something different, you can experiment with other fillings. For example, you can make a pineapple bun by adding a layer of pineapple paste to the centre of the bun. Alternatively, you can make coconut buns by adding a mixture of coconut and sugar to the centre of the bun.

Cocktail buns are another popular variation of the butter bun. To make a cocktail bun, you can add a mixture of butter, sugar, and desiccated coconut to the centre of the bun. You can also add a small amount of seafood, such as shrimp or crab, to the filling to give it a unique flavour.

The possibilities for fillings are endless. Don't be afraid to experiment and try new things. Just remember to keep the filling relatively small so that it doesn't overflow during baking.

Baking and Finishing Touches

A baker carefully applies egg wash to freshly baked Chinese butter buns, adding a golden sheen before serving

Preheating and Baking

Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a baking pan with parchment paper. Place the buns on the prepared pan, leaving enough space between each one to allow for rising. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the buns are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped.

Applying Egg Wash and Toppings

Once the buns are baked, remove them from the oven and brush them with egg wash. This will give them a shiny, golden finish. You can also add toppings such as sesame seeds or chopped nuts for added texture and flavour. If you want to add a sweet glaze, try brushing the buns with a simple syrup made from equal parts sugar and water.

Cooling and Serving

After applying the egg wash and toppings, let the buns cool on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes before serving. This will allow them to set and prevent them from becoming soggy. Serve the buns warm or at room temperature, and enjoy!

If you want to add a seafood twist to this recipe, you could try adding some chopped prawns or crab meat to the filling mixture. This will add a delicious seafood flavour and make the buns even more filling. Just make sure to cook the seafood first before adding it to the mixture.

Storing and Reheating

Chinese butter buns are placed in airtight containers for storage and then reheated in a microwave or steamer before serving

Once you have made your delicious Chinese butter buns, you may have some leftovers that you want to store for later consumption. Here are some tips on how to store and reheat your buns to keep them fresh and delicious.

Storing

You can store your Chinese butter buns in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days. Alternatively, you can store them in the fridge for up to four days. To prevent your buns from drying out, you can wrap them in a kitchen towel before storing them in an airtight container or zip lock bag.

If you want to store your buns for a longer period, you can freeze them for up to four months. To freeze your buns, wrap them individually in cling film or place them in a zip lock bag. Make sure to label the container with the date so that you can keep track of how long they have been frozen.

Reheating

To reheat your Chinese butter buns, you can use a steamer or a microwave. If you are using a steamer, place the buns in the steamer and steam them for 2-3 minutes until they are heated through.

If you are using a microwave, wrap the buns in a damp paper towel and microwave them on high for 30 seconds to 1 minute until they are heated through. Make sure not to overheat the buns as they can become tough and chewy.

If you want to add some seafood to your Chinese butter buns, you can try adding some chopped prawns or crab meat to the filling. The seafood will add a delicious flavour and texture to the buns.

Frequently Asked Questions

A table with ingredients and tools for making Chinese butter buns. A recipe book open to the "Frequently Asked Questions" page

What's the secret to a fluffy Taiwanese milk bread bun?

The secret to a fluffy Taiwanese milk bread bun is using a special technique called tangzhong, which involves cooking a small amount of flour and water into a paste and then incorporating it into the dough. This helps to create a soft and tender texture.

Can you suggest a simple filling for homemade butter buns?

If you're looking for a simple filling for homemade butter buns, you can try using a mixture of butter and sugar. You could also try adding some chopped nuts or dried fruit for extra flavour and texture. For a seafood twist, you could try using a mixture of cooked crab meat and cream cheese.

How do you ensure your butter buns come out soft and not dense?

To ensure your butter buns come out soft and not dense, it's important to use the right ingredients and follow the recipe carefully. Make sure to use bread flour instead of all-purpose flour, as it has a higher protein content that helps to create a light and airy texture. You should also make sure to knead the dough thoroughly and allow it to rise properly before baking.

What's the calorie count for an average Chinese butter bun?

The calorie count for an average Chinese butter bun can vary depending on the size and filling of the bun. On average, a plain Chinese butter bun contains around 200-250 calories. If you add a filling, such as red bean paste or custard, the calorie count will be higher.

What are the key ingredients for an authentic Sarawak butter bun?

The key ingredients for an authentic Sarawak butter bun are bread flour, milk, sugar, yeast, butter and eggs. The dough is enriched with butter and milk, which helps to create a soft and tender texture. The buns are usually topped with a mixture of butter, sugar and milk before baking, which creates a sweet and crispy topping.

Is there a foolproof easy recipe for beginners to make Chinese butter buns?

Yes, there are many easy recipes for beginners to make Chinese butter buns. One simple recipe involves mixing flour, yeast, sugar, milk, butter and eggs together to form a dough. The dough is then kneaded, allowed to rise, shaped into buns and baked. For a seafood twist, you could try adding some chopped prawns or scallops to the filling.