I’ve been invited to a Chinese Lunar Party! In years past I’ve been such a great guest, I’ve brought nothing and eaten everything. I haven’t gone to one since going gluten free and becoming a better guest, which makes me think I should bring something. Plus its a potluck. But what to bring? I could bring the scallion pancakes, and I may do, but I like to bring an assortment of items, usually one savory and one sweet.
I cannot remember if I’ve ever had these before. I have no fond memory of eating these in days past. I do recall going to California with some friends and raiding an Asian bakery for breakfast. They had buns the size my head and they were glorious.
I found this recipe and was eager to try it out. The only thing I needed was either red bean paste or the azuki beans to make the paste with. Stubbornly I traipsed through Wegmans looking for either and got to the register without it. Customer service was great, they looked up the beans, told me the aisle it was in, and showed me a picture of what it looked like. Awesome.
I adapted the bean paste recipe by lowering the sugar content and using honey instead of refined sugar. For the buns I adapted by using gluten free flours and a little more water. I also do not have a steamer but Food52 has us covered, check out their steamer hacks. I used Method 2. These are delicious! I know they require some work, but it is for a special occasion right? Do it though, they are so yummy.
- 1 can azuki beans
- 2 TBS Butter
- ½ cup honey
- 1¼ cup warm water
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2.5 tsp yeast
- 1¼ cup gluten free flour, I used premium gold flax
- ½ cup arrowroot
- ¼ rice flour
- 1 TBS tapioca starch
- 1 tsp milk powder
- Canola oil
- *I thought the beans were firm so I simmered them in ½ cup of water until the water was absorbed.
- In the food processor puree the beans until they looks like hummus.
- Return beans to pot and add the butter and honey, cooking over medium heat until they melt.
- *Because I used liquid sweeteners I added 1 tsp of arrowroot and removed from heat to allow the beans to thicken.
- In a small bowl combine the warm water, sugar, and yeast. Set aside to proof.
- In a large bowl whisk the flax flour, arrowroot, rice flour, tapioca starch, and milk powder.
- Pour yeast mixture into flour mixture and mix either by hand or with dough hook on stand mixer.
- Allow the dough to rest for 1 hour.
- Form dough into a log and cut into 1 inch sections.
- Flatten each section with the palm of your hand.
- Add about 1 tbs bean paste and crimp to seal.
- Brush with canola oil and set to rest for about 20 minutes.
- Steam buns for 20-25 mins.
- Allow to rest for 5 mins before serving.
Are you celebrating the Chinese Lunar New Year? What is your favorite dish?