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Nai Nai's Pork Bao #BreadBakers

BreadBakers#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the Bread Bakers home page

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send an email with your blog URL to Stacy at

This month’s event is Chinese Bread hosted by Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm. I almost didn't join the fun. For some reason, I hadn't seen the prompt. But, after a quick brainstorm, I realized that it was the perfect time for me to play with some Chinese dumplings. I've always wanted to make them. So, here's the line-up of the #BreadBakers Chinese breads...

Nai Nai's Pork Bao

The boys and I were inspired to make this after watching Abominable, but I neglected to write up the process. This event was the perfect impetus to do so.

  • 250 grams all-purpose flour
  • 125 grams water, slightly warm
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 10 grams organic granulated sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 Tablespoon oil (I used canola oil)

  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 2 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon organic granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine (I used Marsala wine)
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1/2-inch fresh ginger knob, peeled and grated
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorn

Place the sugar in a mixing bowl and stir in the warm water. Sprinkle the yeast over the top and let bloom for 15 minutes until frothy and foamy. Add in a pinch of salt and the flour. Knead the dough until smooth and elastic. Oil the mixing bowl and place the kneaded dough back in the bowl. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise for 90 minutes or until it doubles in size. While the dough rises, make the filling.

Place the hot water in a  mixing bowl. Add in the ginger, star anise, fennel seeds, and Sichuan peppercorn. Let the flavors infuse for at least 30 minutes. Strain out the spices and let cool completely.

Place the cooled water into a large mixing bowl. Add in the rest of the ingredients. Knead until completely combined. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before handling.

Cut parchment paper to the size of your steamer. Poke holes through the paper and set aside. 

Roll the dough into a log and cut into twelve pieces. If you are weighing the dough, each should be 32 grams. Roll each piece into a ball. Then, on a floured surface, use a rolling pin to press the wrapper into a 4-inch disc.

Place 25 grams of the filling to the wrapper. Pinch the wrapper to form pleats, then twist into sealed dumpling. Place the bao on the prepared parchment paper. Let rise for 30 minutes.

Pour water into the bottom of your steamer pot. Bring the water to a boil, then place the steamer and dumplings on top. Cover and steam for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let stand for another 3 minutes before opening the pot.

Serve immediately with a variety of Asian dipping sauces.


  1. These look scrumptious. I have never watched Abominable but now I want to so I can see how you were inspired to make these.

  2. All of the spices in your filling sound amazing. Great job on the buns!!

  3. This sounds looke delicious I need to try it, I may try with another filling.

  4. They look fantastic! And that filling, so very yum.


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