Sunday, 20 July 2014

Horse Japanese Sweet Bean Buns (using Wu Pao Chun Champion Toast Recipe)

It's really fun that my children are starting to be involved in my bakes. They have started to request for all kinds of animals for snacks and I have become their "zoo master" who whips up all sorts of animals ^_^". So this week's request was a horse and this is my valiant attempt at a horse (phew!). Yee haw! :p

Anyway, my family cannot get enough of the sweet Japanese red beans! I chanced upon another type of sweet red bean in Daiso called "Japanese sweet bean jam with whole azuki beans". Oh, it's so good you can eat it on its own! This time I tried using the famous Wu Pao Chun Champion Toast recipe for making the bun dough. I have been wanting to try this straight dough method that yields really soft bread recommended by Phay Shing, and I was further piqued the recipe is so similar to the Panda Japanese milk buns that were so soft. For the un-inclined, Wu Pao Chun is a world champion bread bakery in Taiwan. Their Red Wine Longan bread has won numerous medals in top class world bread making competitions and long queues often form at their entrance for their limited award-winning breads.

Recipe for the bun dough using Wu Pao Chun Champion Toast is adapted from Aunty Young. I have used the recipe used the dough function on my breadmaker to prepare the dough, but you can also knead it by hand and let it proof.

Ingredients (makes 8 buns)
Bread flour 300g
Castor sugar 24g
Salt 4g
Butter 15 g
Fresh milk 198 g
Yeast 3g

1. Put the ingredients into the breadmaker pan according to the sequence below:
- Add the wet ingredients first: milk.
- Add the dry ingredients next: bread flour, sugar at the side, yeast in the middle (dig a small hole).
- Select dough function on bm. When the mixture is being combined around 2-5 min later, add in the salt and the softened butter.

2. Meanwhile, prepare the Japanese sweet bean jam with azuki beans into 30g balls each.

3. After the breadmaker is finished with the dough function, transfer the dough out onto a lightly floured table and punch it down (top left pic).

4. Divide the dough into eight 60g balls for the horses. Divide the rest of the dough into sixteen 2g balls for each ear. Let the dough rest for 10 min under cling wrap.

5. Flatten each 60g ball into an oval disc (top row, middle pic) and place an azuki bean ball on top (top row, right pic). Roll the dough over on the long side, pinch tight and place them with its pinched sides facing down on the baking paper.

6. Stick the ears onto the top of the buns and pinch the edges to make them pointed (see bottom row, left pic). Cover with cling wrap and let the dough rise for 60 min (bottom row, left pic). *Meanwhile, preheat the oven meanwhile to 190°C.

7. Prepare 1 tsp cocoa powder with 1 egg yolk for painting on the brown mouth patch, eyes and hair. Brush them on with a fine brush after proofing before going in to the oven (bottom row, middle pic).

8. Lower the temperature to 140°C before placing the buns at the lowest rack. Bake for 22-25 min or till the bread sounds hollow when you tap on it (bottom row, right pic).

I painted the nostrils with charcoal powder mixed with water. Just use a fine brush to paint it on. I gave the horses some sweet rosy cheeks using food markers just for fun :).

Homemade buns are always over packed with fillings! :D Check out the yummy sweet red beans spilling out! I found the bread really fine, soft and fluffy though it was a straight dough method! The caption says it all :D.

With love,

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