Known as hua juan, flower rolls are a variety of popular mantou (steamed buns) from northern China. They are often served with meat stews and saucy dishes in place of rice.

Makes
12

Preparation

20min

Cooking

20min

Skill level

Mid
By
Average: 3.3 (24 votes)
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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 7 g (2 tsp) sachet dried yeast
  • 450 g (3 cups) plain flour, sifted
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • sesame oil, to brush

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.

Instructions

Standing time 2 hours

Place sugar, yeast and 250 ml lukewarm water in a bowl and stir to combine. Set aside for 10 minutes or until the mixture bubbles.

Place flour in a bowl, make a well in the centre and add yeast mixture. Stir until mixture forms a slightly sticky dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside in a warm, draught-free place for 2 hours or until dough doubles in size.

Dissolve baking powder with 2 tsp water. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll out until 2 cm thick. Add baking powder mixture to centre of dough, fold in sides and knead for 2 minutes or until smooth. Divide into 2 and roll out each piece into a 20 cm x 30 cm rectangle. Brush with sesame oil.

Starting from the long edge, roll up dough like a Swiss roll. Trim and discard ends. Cut each roll into 6. Using a chopstick, press down gently through centre of each roll until ends open up like flowers. Remove chopstick and place each roll on a small sheet of baking paper on a tray. Set aside for 15 minutes.

Steam flower rolls, in 2 batches, in a large bamboo steamer set over a pan of rapidly boiling water for 10 minutes. Serve warm.

 

Photography by Brett Stevens.         

 

As seen in Feast magazine, Jan 2012, Issue 5. For more recipes and articles, pick up a copy of this month's Feast magazine or check out our great subscriptions offers here.