Seafood buns with shrimp well worth queuing up for
Shengjianbao, or pan-fried bun stuffed with pork, is a popular Shanghai snack adored for its juicy filling and crispy pastry. In the district’s Sijing Town a local dim sum store used to add dried shrimp to the filling to make its special seafood-flavored shengjianbao. This kind of pan-fried bun tasted so good that during a food exhibition in Songjiang decades ago, buyers formed a long queue in front of the store’s booth to try the seafood-flavored shengjianbao whereas the ordinary ones in other booths were somehow eclipsed by it.
To make about 40 buns a cook has to prepare ingredients including 500 grams of flour, 5 grams of dried yeast, 500 grams of meat, 50 grams of dried shrimp and flavorings including sugar, gourmet powder and pork jelly.
The flour is divided into two portions — boiling water is added to 100 grams of the flour, which is rubbed into a dough which will later be used to reduce the fermentation degree of the remaining 400 grams of flour. To the 400 grams are added 5 grams of yeast, 5 grams of sugar and 200 grams of warm water, a mixture which will undergo the fermentation process.
Dried shrimps, after soaked in warm water, are cut into pieces.
The meat filling will be mixed with salt, cooking wine, soy sauce, ginger pieces, shrimp, the water used to soak shrimp, gourmet powder, 200 grams of clear water and pork jelly.
The 400 grams of fermented dough will be mixed with the 100 grams of ordinary dough and the whole mixture will be rubbed into 40 pieces of bun skins, to be used to wrap the filling.
Put oil in a pan, put the buns onto the pan and fry them until half of the buns turn a golden color. Then you can have a bite of the classic seafood buns which in the past people made a long queue up for them.