Pritchard’s Sticky Tofu Bao Buns

This recipe is taken from Matt Pritchard’s- Dirty Vegan Another Bite Cookbook (I have adapted it slightly). The bao buns are soooo tasty!! I felt so accomplished that I had made the buns from scratch, I highly recommend giving this recipe a go.

Ingredients

For the tofu:

  • 2cm piece of fresh root ginger (finely grated)
  • 1 garlic clove (finely chopped)
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar
  • 1 tsp Chinese five spice
  • 300g firm tofu
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil.

For the buns:

  • 80ml warm water
  • 40ml oat milk (unsweetened)
  • 1 tsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp fast action dried yeast
  • 200g plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt.

Pickled veg:

  • 1 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/4 red onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 carrot (peeled and cut into thin matchsticks)
  • 4 radishes (thinly chopped)
  • 1/4 cucumber (cut into thin matchsticks)
  • 1/4 tsp salt.

Method

1) Pickle the veg, preferably the night before, or if you are pinch, prepare 30 minutes beforehand. Mix the sugar, vinegar and salt together in a mixing bowl and add the finely chopped veggies. Cover and leave overnight to pickle.

2) Mix all the tofu mix ingredients (except the tofu) together on a shallow bowl or large plate.

3) Chop the tofu into 6 even slabs.

4) Add the tofu to the marinade, coat and leave.

5) Mix water, milk, oil, sugar and yeast in a mixing bowl and leave for 15 minutes, so that the yeast activates and looks ‘foamy.’

6) Then add the flour, salt and baking powder to the mixture and knead for 10 minutes. Pop back into a bowl, cover and leave to prove in a warm place for a few hours, until the dough has doubled in size.

7) Knock all the air out of the dough and separate into 6 balls, roll the balls into 6 ovals. Coat the the outside with sunflower oil and place a chopstick/stainless steel straw widthways and fold over. Transfer the buns to baking parchment and cover loosely with cling film- leave for about 30 minutes until the buns have doubled in size.

8) Steam the buns for 12-15 minutes on the baking parchments in batches of 2-3 (depending on how big your steamer is.

9) Scrape as much of the marinade as possible off the tofu and then fry for a few minutes until golden. Then add the remaining marinade to the pan and cook until it goes rich and sticky.

10) Open the buns, place a slice of tofu, some pickled veg, coriander leaves and sesame seeds. You can also add some sriracha for heat.

11) Enjoy!