What’s your favorite dessert?
I couldn’t pick just one. It’s coffee cake one day, falooda another, or a simple gulab jamun, which I always love.
While San Francisco is famous for it’s Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars and earthquakes, it’s also very famous for its restaurants. There are no words to describe the popular sourdough of San Francisco, it’s amazing. The food truck festival is a very popular one. The Ghirardelli ice cream is just to die for. My mouth just waters with the memory of the English muffins from Model bakery. Ahhh, so good. Little Italy has some beautifully created dishes as well. While burritos are considered sacred here, Chinese food is like an institution. We have some very very popular chefs who have great restaurants, and I’ve been to a lot of them. It is a food heaven filled with culture and beauty.
Sometimes I think I go to restaurants just to have desserts. I order my desserts along with the food. Like the red bean steamed buns made with sticky rice, so so good. I eat it even before our food comes out. One of my favorites. So, of course, I wanted to make it at home as soon as I tried it for the first time.
Red bean paste is very similar to to something we make in India, just that it’s made with channa/bengal gram daal. We stuff it in a unleavened dough and make parathas(puran poli, poli, obbatu, obbat). After researching a bit, I did get a bit overwhelmed by the process of making the sticky rice paste for the outer coating. The next best thing was stuffing it in bread, which is definitely a lot easier.
This is an inspired by Aeri’s kitchen on you tube. The bread dough I used for this recipe is buttery, sweet, and delightful. Like many other types of bread dough, this has to be kneaded a bit to get it to a smooth consistency and elasticity. The stand mixer is your best friend for this recipe.
Flavor the red bean with any spice you like and they are simply amazing.
Inspired by a Chinese dessert which is also called Anpan, I believe. I am happy to be sharing this on CHINESE NEW YEAR.
Happy Chinese NEW YEAR to everyone celebrating today.
- 3½ Cups All-Purpose Flour( or half all purpose and ½ whole wheat)
- 2 Cups Sweetened Red Bean Paste(store bought or made at home, see notes to make at home)
- ⅔ Cup Lukewarm Water
- ⅔ Cup Lukewarm Milk
- ¼ Cup white sugar
- ¼ Cup Butter, Melted
- 2 tsp Fast Active Dry Yeast
- 1½ tsp Salt
- ½ tsp cardamom powder
- ½ cup almond and walnut powder(optional)
- Some Melted Butter (for Brushing)
- Some Black Sesame Seeds (to Garnish)
- Mix the luke warm water, milk and yeast with a tbsp of sugar and let it sit to bubble up.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the all purpose flour, salt and rest of the sugar. Add the yeast mixture and mix the dough. Add the melted butter and start kneading it. If you have a stand mixer, put it on medium for 8-10 minutes to knead well. It should be a smooth dough. If you plan on mixing it by hand, knead it for about 20 minutes for a smooth and soft dough. Put the dough in a oiled bowl and cover, let it rise for 1 hr 30 minutes or until tripled in volume.
- The red bean paste has to be thick. If you use store bought red bean paste, put it in a non stick pan and let it dry out while stirring continuously.( If it is not liquidy and if you can make a ball out of it without it been too sticky, skip the step of drying it out.) Turn off the heat when it dries up and add the cardamom and nut mixture, mix well and set aside.
- Once the dough has risen, make equal portions. Stretch a bit, to about 5 inches and keep a medium icecream scoop of the red bean stuffing. Close it and tap and pat it flat. You can leave it like this or cut like a flower and set it on a lined baking sheet.
- Bake it in a 400 degree preheated oven. It can take anywhere from 20-30 minutes depending on the size of your bread buns. Once you take it out, brush it with some melted butter and let it cool on a cooling rack.
- Let cool and serve.
Soak the red beans overnight. Next day, you can cook in a pressure cooker with 2 cups of water or you can cook in a pan with lot of water to cover the beans and more. Cook until it get mushed completely. Drain the water thoroughly. Add 1 cup of sugar for 2 cups of beans. Mix well and dry the mixture a little bit. Grind the mixture in a food processor or run it through a thick sieve for a smooth paste.