Preparation / Directions:
Sweet, soft toasty-brown buns surround a tangy barbecued pork filling.
In a large bowl, dissolve 2 tablespoons of the sugar in milk and water. Sprinkle yeast over top of the milk mixture and let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes or until frothy. Gradually mix in remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, flour, and salt. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough for about 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball and place in a lightly greased bowl. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm area for about 1 hour or until doubled. Meanwhile, soak mushrooms in enough warm water to cover for 30 minutes; drain. Cut off and discard stems; coarsely chop caps. Set aside. Cooking
Place wok or wide frying pan over high heat until hot. Add oil, swirling to coat sides. Add green onions, garlic, and mushrooms; stir-fry for 1 minute. Stir in water, hoisin sauce, and sugar; mix well. Add cornstarch solution and cook, stirring until sauce boils down and thickens. Add pork, mix well. Remove from heat and let cool. Punch down dough, then roll on a lightly floured surface into a 12-inch long cylinder. Cut cylinder crosswise into 1-inch pieces. Shape each piece into a ball; let rest for 5 minutes.
To shape each dumpling flatten one ball with a rolling pin to make a 4 to 6-inch circle, keeping dough covered to prevent drying. Place 1 heaping tablespoon of filing in the center for each circle (see illustration). Gather the edges of the circle over the filing; close top by pleating, pinching and twisting edges together. Place buns, pleated side down, on a baking sheet, allowing enough room for rising. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes or until light and puffy . Brush tops of buns with egg yolk. Let rise for 15 more minutes.
Bake in a 350F oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Tips: Traditionally, these buns are steamed over boiling water, pleated side up, for 12 to 15 minutes rather than baked. Follow the same procedure for preparing dough except do not brush tops of buns with egg yolk. Try other fillings, such as minced chicken, pork or shrimp.