Saturday, November 21, 2009

Chicken Curry Buns

Quinn is an excellent baker and I was really honoured when she offered to teach me how to make my very first batch of Asian buns using the infamous water roux starter otherwise known as 65°C Tang Zhong.

Seeing that it's my first time attempting to make buns, I'm pretty proud with the outcome and I'm surprised my arms didn't ache from all that kneading.

Thanks so much for the lessons Quinn!

Ingredients: (Makes approximately 11 small buns)

i) Water Roux (Tang Zhong) Starter:
  • 25g bread flour or high protein flour
  • 1/2 cup of water
Tang Zhong is one part of bread flour or high-protein flour to 5 parts of room temperature water, measured by weight. It is cooked until it reaches 65°C and cooled before added into any bread recipes.

Breads with Tang Zhong incorporated in it are softer and remain softer for a longer period without any bread softener added to it. It is the gelatinization of starch in bread flour that causes this when the mixture of bread flour and water is heated until it reaches 65°C. Starch gelatinization helps absorb more water to provide the soft and elastic texture bread. It's all about the chemical reaction, baby! ;)

ii) Bread dough:
  • 195g bread flour
  • 90g cake flour
  • 1.5 tsp instant yeast (6g)
  • 1 tsp salt (6g)
  • 2 tbsp heaped castor sugar (30g)
  • 1.5 tsp heaped milk powder (12g)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 75g Tang Zhong or water roux starter
iii) Filling:
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp curry powder, mixed with 3 tbsp water
  • 1 big onion, diced
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 200g chicken meat, cubed
  • 2 boiled potatoes, cubed
  • 1 tsp chicken bouillon powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp water
iv) Glaze:
  • 1 egg
  • 1/8 tsp of salt
  1. To make Tang Zhong or water roux starter, whisk the bread flour with water in a small pot until well combined.
  2. Using low to medium heat, cook, stirring often until the mixture turns white, starchy or when it reaches 65°C.
  3. For those without a thermometer like me, draw the figure 8 using a whisk. It is ready when it leaves a trail on the surface.
  4. Remove Tang Zhong to a small bowl and cover it with cling wrap touching the surface to prevent skin formation.
  5. This could be kept up to 3 days in the fridge before it turns greyish.
  6. To make the dough, combine bread flour, cake clour, instant yeast, salt, sugar and milk powder in a large bowl and mix well.
  7. Combine egg, water and Tang Zhong starter in a smaller bowl and mix well.
  8. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and whisk until it's no longer whisk-able then transfer onto a clean surface and knead the dough for a minimum of 20 minutes to develop the gluten.
  9. Once it forms a smooth mixture, add in 45g softened unsalted butter and knead till a smooth glossy, satiny ball of dough is formed. Add bread flour only if necessary and very sticky.
  10. Smooth out dough and place ball of dough, seams side down in a lightly greased bowl. Cling wrap it and let it rise until double in size which takes about 30-45 minutes depending on weather and climate.
  11. While waiting for the dough to proof, prepare the filling. Stir fry curry powder mixture, onion and curry leaves in oil until fragrant.
  12. Add in chicken, potatoes, chicken bouillon powder, salt and water and continue stir frying until dry.
  13. Once the dough doubles in size, punch out all air bubbles from dough with your fist and knead it briefly. Weigh each portion of dough to approximately 50g.
  14. Wrap up with the curry chicken filling and seal the seams well to prevent leakage.Very loosely wrap a strip of pandan leaf across the centre of the oblong shaped bun.
  15. Place it on a greased tray. Repeat with remaining buns. Leave it for second proofing and allow it to double in size again.
  16. When size doubles, bake it in a preheated oven at 200°C for 15mins.

Thanks to the Tang Zhong starter, the buns remained soft and fluffy for the next few days. That's the way I like my buns! Thanks for the amazing experience again Quinn!


Quinn said...

I'm glad you like it Sammi! You're a very good student too and pick things up quick!

sammi_ysh said...

Thanks for being so encouraging and helpful. :)

The Little Teochew said...

No wonder the buns looked so familiar! Great job, girls! :)

pigpigscorner said...

They look so cute! I've heard of this method before and can't wait to try it out!

sammi_ysh said...

Ann: You must give it a try! It gives a whole new texture!

Ju: Small world isn't it? Thanks. :)

Karine said...

These look delicious! Thanks for sharing :)

Cakebrain said...

I have a recipe using this starter but haven't gotten around to trying it. These look wonderful! I'm inspired to try them now!

sammi_ysh said...

Karine: Thanks

Cakebrain: Try them out! Tell me how it goes. :)

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