This traditional vegan Chinese dish uses only flour, water and yeast. This is a staple food that can be eaten with both savory and sweet accompaniments.
Let's start cooking!
Step 1- Prepare yeast mixture
- In a small pot, heat water to 35°C (if you want to, dissolve 2 Tbsp sugar in it), then mix in the yeast.
- Mix well and set aside for 5 minutes.
Step 2- Mix and knead the dough
- In a large bowl, combine a pinch of salt with flour.
- Pour the yeast mixture slowly into the bowl with flour and stir with a whisk or chopsticks.
- Using your hands or a stand mixer, knead the flour into smooth and soft dough.
- It might start off being a little bit sticky.
- Cover the bowl and let the dough rest for around 1 hour, or until the dough doubles in size.
Mantou is a staple food in Northern China, where it is commonly eaten with pickled vegetables, or stuffed with various types of meat and/or vegetables.
Step 3- Shape the dough
- On a floured surface, roll the dough into a long log around 1 inch in diameter, and cut the log to pieces about 1 inch thick.
- Brush some oil on the bottom of each bun.
Step 4 - Steam the mantou
Place them in lined steamers one by one, cover and set up in a wok filled with cold water.
Rest for around 10 minutes.Leaving the unsteamed buns to rest will result in a fluffier texture
On high heat, bring water to a boil and continue to steam for around 20 to 25 minutes.
Remove from heat and wait for around 5 minutes before opening the lid.According to legend, they were named as such when Zhuge Liang, a famed military strategist in Ancient China, floated large steamed buns across a river instead of the severed heads of his men to ensure a safe crossing.These è »é (mantou) or “heads”, tricked their enemies, and the words eventually changed to become é¢å¤´(mantou)
Plate and Serve!
Serve hot. These mantou go incredibly well with dishes such as chili crab when deep fried, or even as a dessert dipped in condensed milk.