Monday, September 2, 2013

Steamed Bacon Buns with Hoisin Sauce

What's the best Chinese food appetizer?  Dumplings?  Egg rolls? Crab rangoon? No!  The best Chinese food appetizer is pork buns - nothing makes me light up like biting into a spongy bun until I reach the saucy porky goodness.  I salivate just thinking about it....

I'm a firm believer in making things from scratch: pancakes, pasta, and bake goods. I found this recipe in Food & Wine and knew I had to try it.  It uses packaged Pillsbury Biscuits, but it is a huge time saver and steaming the biscuits makes them taste like those spongy buns I dream about.  The bacon helps provide that pork punch and is much more low maintenance than pork belly.


1/2 lb - Thick-cut Smoky Bacon (cut into 2-inch pieces)
16 - 1/8-inch-thick Coins Peeled Fresh Ginger
1 cup - Low-sodium Chicken Broth

1/4 cup - Mirin

1/4 cup - Unseasoned Rice Vinegar

2 tbsp - Sugar
1 tbsp - Soy Sauce 
16.3 oz - Buttermilk Biscuit Dough (8 biscuits - Pillsbury Grands)  
Hoisin sauce
Sliced Scallions
Sliced Radishes 
Bread-and-butter Pickles 

1) In a large skillet over high heat, cook the bacon and ginger, turning the bacon once until lightly browned about 5 minutes. 
2) Spoon off all of the fat in the skillet. Add the chicken broth, mirin, vinegar, sugar and soy sauce to the skillet and simmer over very low heat, turning the bacon occasionally, until it is tender and the liquid is reduced to a syrupy glaze, about 10 minutes. Cover and keep warm. 
3) Fill a roasting pan with 2 inches of water and set 4 ramekins in the corners of the pan. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper and spray with vegetable oil spray. Arrange the biscuits in the baking pan and set it on top of the ramekins in the roasting pan, over the water. Cover the roasting pan very tightly with foil and bring to a boil over high heat. Steam the biscuits until fluffy and cooked through about 8 minutes.
4) Carefully split each biscuit with your fingers and arrange them on a platter; spread the bottoms with hoisin sauce and Sriracha and top with the glazed bacon. Drizzle each bun with some of the glaze and garnish with sliced scallions, radishes and pickles. Close the buns and serve right away.

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