Asian New Year:
Steamed BBQ Tofu Buns
Lotus Root Chips
Tonight's vegan test kitchen coincides with Asian New Year -- and it was time to try out a new dim sum recipe -- namely shumai. Most of the shumai we've seen have been seafood based, but after an afternoon trip to CAM, we had an idea to try a vegetable based version.
The recipe still needs tweaking, but we used a combo of peeled water chestnuts, leftover lotus root pieces from making the chips, equal portions of fried minced king trumpet mushrooms and tofu finished with tamari, ginger, cilantro, shallots, brown rice wine vinegar, salt, pepper and cornstarch to bind it all together. The mixture was pulsed in the vita-mix, leaving some texture remaining.
The filling was then added to round wonton wrappers. Traditionally, shumai is topped with either peas or carrots, so I broke out the #20 parisian scoop (a.k.a. 20mm melon baller) and used a large peeled carrot. It takes a little practice to get the nice round shape, but it turned out well.
They were steamed for about 10 minutes along with the BBQ Tofu Buns.
My only sorrow is that we didn't make more ;)
This is our vegan version of char sui bau -- a better explanation and video here -- we adapted the dough by using 1/2 the amount of sugar, subbing soy milk, and using peanut oil.
For the filling we diced the tofu very fine, apple-wood smoked it for 20 minutes, and then pan-fried it until golden brown.
The sauce subs out veg stock, hoisin and sherry for the Shao Hsing.
Rounding out the party were the ever-popular lotus root chips...
...and scallion pancakes (recipe).