Sunday, April 15, 2012

Starter Dough for Smile Char Siew Pau/Bao

i had wanted to share this step-by-step procedure from the beginning to end with a finished smiling pau/bao but blogger did not cooperate.  I loaded all the pictures and was about to select them, boom, it took me somewhere and i lost all the pictures loaded.  I am not going to load them again, cos blogger does not allow mutiple loading and i had to load, one at a time.  I hope someone can help me load multiple like how it used to be.  Anyway, so i decided to post this procedure by sections, starting from the starter.  I started the starter on March 7th, 2012 when i made the first batch of smile pau/bao.  I will keep a little or rather what was not needed and added 2 cups of pau flour and enough of water to make into a soft dough.  I have found that i could make the pau/bao smile although the starter did not foam and smell sour. 

The starter dough started at the marked line.  250 gm pau flour with 125 ml to 200 ml water and 50 gm of leftover starter dough,, to make a soft dough.  Knead dough until smooth and push it down flat onto a straight-sided container.  Mark the height of the dough, cover the container and leave on the kitchen counter.

Starter dough has reached double after 2 days/48 hours and is ready.  It took 2 days to reach this stage and it might reach this maturity if you are in the tropics.  Monitor this progress and if it has reached this stage and you do not wish to make any paus/baos, leave this in the fridge.  Bring this back to room temperature before proceeding to make pau/bao.

Bird's-eye view of surface of ready starter dough, Not much of happening but bubbles can be seen at the sides of container.  This starter is not so acidic and sour, because it is a stiff starter, stiff starter will not be as sour as liquid starter.  Although it does not smell sour, i do use a tiny drop of potassium carbonate & sodium bi-carbonate solution a.k.a.'kan sui' to contra the acidity.  A word of caution though, a little too much, the finished pau/bao will turn brown.

This is how it looks like, spider web like, gluten strands developed.

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