This post has been with me for quite a while but did not find time to share the recipe. Since I have family commitment these few weeks and unable to develop new recipes, I therefore retrieve from the recipe bank and share with readers.
Crystal pao or buns is not a very common delicacy in Singapore. It is a delicacy originated from Chaozhou (Teochew) but also common in Hong Kong. I remembered only one store in Tiong Bahru market is selling it but I am unsure if they are still selling. I have to admit that i am not very happy with the transparency of the crust but texture wise it is acceptable. I suspect it is the brand of wheat starch being used. I noticed some brand are more transparent than the others.
In this recipe, I will also share a special filling, Hong Kong custard filling. This filling can be used for mooncake also. The filling is delicious and I have also even eaten it as a filling in Hong Kong dim sum restaurant.
奶黃包（又稱奶皇包）是粵式包點，流行於廣東、江浙等地，在香港的酒樓則作為一道點心。最初配方包括有鹹蛋黃，吃起來有一股濃滑的奶香。由於面世初期，不是每家食肆都知其配方，各自模彷，因此時至今日，每家食肆的奶黃包製法都有所不同，大多數地方，奶黃餡只是以牛油、雞蛋、牛奶、糖、麵粉、粟粉及吉士粉等製作。“ （Source: https://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%A5%B6%E9%BB%83%E5%8C%85)
WHAT IS REQUIRED
Servings: Prepare about 25 crystal bao
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- 2 tablespoons of custard powder
- 40 grams of melted butter
- 60 grams of low protein flour or cake flour
- 125 grams of fresh milk or evaporated milk
Crystal Bao Dough
- 30 grams of corn flour/tapioca flour/lotus root flour
- 90 grams wheat starch
- 180 grams or ml of hot boiling water
- 1 tablespoon of cooking oil
STEPS OF PREPARATION
- In a big mixing bowl, sift in the low protein flour and custard flour. Add the sugar and make a well in the centre. Crack the eggs, add the milk followed by the melted butter. Stir until well mixed. Sift it onto a greased steaming plate. Steamed under high heat for 20-25 minutes or until the mixture is set.
- Once the mixture is set or cooked, transfer the custard filling to a food processor (can do it manually), stir until well combined. As it is likely that the custard may still have lumps. Transfer the mixture out to a bowl, knead it until no lump is noted. Divide equally into 25 balls. Set aside.
- In a big mixing bowl, put the corn starch (or other starches suggested above) and wheat starch . Add the hot boiling water and use a tablespoon or a pair of chopsticks to stir until lumps are formed. Pat your hand with some oil, add the remaining oil, knead until a pliable dough is form. Divide the dough into 25 balls or your preferred size.
- Take a dough ball, make a dent and put a custard ball on the centre. Seal the edges and shape round.
- Transfer the balls to the steaming tray with a steaming cloth or lightly greased with oil. Steamed the crystal balls for 5-7 minutes. The ball will become translucent when cooled completely. Brush with cooking oil if you want the crystal bao to look glossy but this is optional. Best served hot when it is warm.
Note that the custard fillings can also be used for moon cakes. This type of filling is especially common in Hong Kong. For this recipe, you can use any fillings of your choice or shape it into any of shapes that you like. Other suggested fillings are lotus paste and date paste.
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