Friday, 30 August 2013

{seremban siew pau/pow in hermie}

The Nonya Lady. The Nonya who? My family knows a woman through my Aunty that happens to make and sell a large variety of yummy Nonya or Peranakan treats throughout the year. This is where I first came across the Seremban Siew Pau. Most people in Australia know the Char Siew Pau that you can eat at nearly every yum cha restaurant that is a steamed white bun that is filled with a pork or chicken filling. This is similar but different. This Pau is not steamed and is in fact baked so that the outside is a crispy pastry. The filling is similar however, in Malaysia it often has peas included. The Nonya Lady's does not have peas and this is actually how I like them.

Anyway, because I like these Pau quite a lot, I thought to myself "what if for some reason the Nonya Lady can't or won't make these anymore?" What was I going to do? Here in Adelaide I really don't think there is anywhere commercial to buy these yummy savoury snacks (correct me if I'm wrong readers). So, I have scoured my recipe books and the web to see what was out there and below is my recipe. It is based on Elin's version with a filling and sauce made from Gourmet Traveller's Char Siew Pau recipe.

The verdict? Well, they were eaten by the family on the same day so they must have been good. Tips for next time include making double the amount so that I can freeze some for snacks and to use slightly less red fermented bean curd on the char siu. Maybe I was a bit heavy handed with using this ingredient but I felt it overpowered all the other flavours. I would also make the char sui and sauce the day before so that it doesn't feel like you're performing a cooking marathon. Enjoy!


Char Siu:
250 grams pork neck or I prefer a cut with a bit of fat
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
2 teaspoons white sugar
teaspoons red fermented beancurd (see note)
teaspoons hoisin sauce
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
teaspoon five-spice powder
tablespoon honey, dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water

1. Cut pork into 3cm-thick, 5cm-wide strips, then combine in a bowl with Shaoxing, sugar, beancurd, hoisin, garlic and five-spice, stir to coat, cover and refrigerate to marinate (at least 2 hours, preferably overnight).
2. Preheat oven to 220C. Drain pork (reserve marinade), place on a rack placed in a roasting pan. Add a little water to pan and roast, basting with marinade and turning occasionally, until cooked and slightly charred (30-35 minutes). (I find that to make cleaning of the rack easier, I wrap the 'bars' of the rack in foil so that I can just peel it off when finished instead of scrubbing caramelised marinade off the metal).
3. Brush with honey mixture while still hot, cool to room temperature.
4. Place 3-4cm cubes of pork into TM bowl and shred 10-15secs/ speed 5 until desired coarseness is achieved and set aside.

Pork in the marinade
Pork ready for roasting
Char siu sauce:
tablespoons ginger, peeled
tablespoons spring onion, white part only
1 small golden shallot, peeled
1 garlic clove, peeled

10 grams vegetable oil
100 ml chicken stock or water
tablespoon caster sugar
tablespoon oyster sauce
teaspoons light soy sauce
½ teaspoon dark soy sauce
1½ tablespoons cornflour, mixed with 50ml cold water

1. Place ginger, spring onion, shallot and garlic into TM bowl. Chop 3secs/ speed 6. Scrape down sides of bowl.
2. Add oil and saute 6mins/ varoma/ speed 1/ reverse.
3. Add in other ingredients (except cornflour) and cook 5mins/ 100C/ stir speed/ reverse.
4. Add in cornflour and cook 1min/ varoma/ stir speed/ reverse.
5. Finally, add in reserved char siu and mix manually with spatula. Set aside. Note: if you are making this on the same day as the dough, I would put this in the fridge as it is a lot easier to use as a filling later on when cold.


Oil Dough:
240 grams plain flour
60 grams butter
60 grams coconut oil (or ghee or shortening)

1. Add all ingredients into TM bowl 4-5 times/ closed lid/ turbo button. It should have a sand like consistency.
2. Pour out onto bench and form into a bowl. Rest for 30 mins.

Water Dough:
240 grams plain flour
60 grams icing sugar (or raw sugar)
30 grams butter
30 grams coconut oil (or ghee)
120 grams water (I found this dough a bit 'wet' so would acutally add in 100 grams and if required, add in the additional 20 later)

1. If using raw sugar, place in TM bowl and mill 10 secs/ speed9. 
2. Put all ingredients into TM bowl. Mix 5 secs/ speed 5.
3. Knead 1 min/ closed lid/ knead button. Rest for 30 mins.

Dough resting for 30mins

Making the Pau:
1 egg for egg wash
sesame seeds to decorate

1. Divide both the water and oil dough into 24 equal pieces . 
2. Wrap 1 piece of water dough around 1 piece of oil dough.

3. Roll it flat into rectangular shape.

4. Roll it from the short end into a swiss roll and then repeat steps 2 & 3 two more times.

5. Flatten and roll into a round. 
I find that if I do all the rolling and flattening and rolling for all 24 pieces it's easier and less time consuming.

6. Place about 1 big tablespoon of filling in centre, wrap and pleat into a pau shape. I don't really do anything special and just push the bits together. It just works.

7. Place on greaseproof paper or silicone mat and brush the pau with egg wash and sprinkle sesame seeds on top for decoration.

8. Bake at 190 ̊C for 20 -25 mins until golden brown.

Makes 24 pieces.

Bon Appetit xx

Notes: Red fermented beancurd is available in all good Asian Grocers. It looks like the picture below. Also, I store extra pau's (if any) in the freezer already baked. To re-heat, just put in the oven for about 15mins at 180C.

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