Friday, June 28, 2013

Mini Azuki Buns 迷你紅豆麵包 (TangZhong method 湯種法)


166edited-1

Just realized that I haven’t share a bread/buns recipe on my blog for a while.  So, I guess it’s about time to do so.  I make loaf breads and filled buns at least two to three times a week.  That’s how much my family loves bread.  Besides the usual Sausage Buns, Pastrami And Muenster Blossom Buns, and Prosciutto with Smoke Gouda Crescent, these sweet Mini Azuki Buns (迷你紅豆麵包) are also my family’s favorites. 

Still remember the Azuki Bean Paste recipe that I shared not long ago?  Great!  If not, please check out this post here for the recipe and pictorial.  You’re going to need that for today’s recipe.  Of course, you can get the ready-made red bean fillings for this bread recipe.  But why?  When you can easily make your own and enjoy it any time you like.  Plus, it’s a lot cheaper to make your own and you can control the sweetness in your bean paste.

093edited

These buns are really mini in size.  I can easily eat three of them just for breakfast.  Yes, they are that tiny.  Or yes, I have a big appetite!  They fit perfectly in my Little Girl’s hands.  Don’t you think everything is more adorable in mini-size?  Well, I guess my hubby’s tummy would disagree on that.  But the rest of the family do think so. 

116edited

You might noticed from the title of this post that this bun recipe uses the TangZhong method (湯種法).  If you’re a long time follower of my blog, you might remember this method is my favorite way of making bread.  In summary, the TangZhong method is adding a cooked dough into the main bread dough to create a soft and fluffy bread/buns, with its softness lasting for a few days.  You can read more about this method here if you're interested.

244edited-1

Are you ready to get into my kitchen to see how I made these Mini Azuki Buns?  Come on over.

First, we prepare the TangZhong the day before (See picture below)

**Note, please excuse me that the TangZhong Pictorial picture is from a previous post.

1) In a small saucepan, add 1/2 cup of water and 1/4 cup bread flour together. 

2) With a wooden specula, stir until there’s no big lumps.

3) Cook the mixture on low heat, stirring constantly. 

4) When the dough turns slightly translucent and thicken, remove from heat and let it cool slightly.

5) I usually double the TangZhong for another recipe.  So, I used a scale to divide the TangZhong.  If you’re just making a single recipe, please ignore this step.

6) Wrap the TangZhong with a piece of plastic wrap and refrigerate it overnight before use.

Pictorial of making Tang Zhong

After the mixer is done with kneading the dough for you (thank you), let the dough proof for an hour.  Divide the dough into 24 equal parts, let them rest for 15 minutes and follow the steps below to fill the buns.  (see picture below)

1) Simply roll the red bean paste into 24 1-inch balls.  Set aside.

2) On a lightly floured surface, work with one portion of the dough at a time.  Gently knead the dough a few times. Form it into a smooth round ball. 

3) With a lightly floured rolling pin, gently roll the dough into an 3-inch circle.

4) Place one of the red bean paste ball in the middle of the rolled-out dough. 

Pictorial A

5) Gently pull the sides up and pinch the dough to close the seams. 

6) Place the filled dough seams side down into a mini tin foil cup (or onto a silpat lined baking sheet).  Repeat with the rest of the dough and fillings.  Place filled buns in a warm place to proof a second time.  About 30 to 40 minutes, or until double in size.

7) Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare the egg wash by beating the egg and a teaspoon of water until well combined.  Gently brush egg wash on top of the buns.

8) Sprinkle with sesame seeds and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until slightly golden. Cool on wiring rack.

Pictorial B

Pretty straight forward, isn't it?  The steps are actually quite easy.  But please note that, the whole process of bread making takes more than 3 hours from start to finish.  So, it could well be your weekend “project”, especially if you have a 9-5 full-time job.  The good news is, the bread stays nice and soft for many days for your enjoyment.  Because of the hot summer weather, you might want to keep the buns in the refrigerator.  Simply reheat them slightly in the microwave (without the foil) or toaster oven and they will taste like they are fresh out of the oven.  (I usually use the microwave so the buns won’t get dried up and turn crispy).

203edited

These are the perfect two-biters, or 6, if you’re like me, eating 3 buns in one sitting.  So, do you make your own bread at home?  Have you ever tried the TangZhong method of making bread?  I would love to hear from you.  Let me know if you have a favorite bread recipe to share.  Until next time, please take care. 

321edited






Mini Azuki Buns 迷你紅豆麵包 (TangZhong method 湯種法):
(Printable Recipe)


TangZhong 湯種 Ingredients:
1/2 Cup Water
1/4 Cup Bread Flour

Bread Dough Ingredients:
1/2 cup warm milk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 3/4 cup bread flour
1 1/2 Teaspoons Active Dry Yeast

Red Bean Paste filling:
1/2 cup cooked red bean paste fillings (see recipe here)

Egg Wash and topping Ingredients:
1 beaten egg
1 teaspoon water
1 tablespoon toasted black sesame seeds

To Make The TangZhong 湯種:

In a small saucepan, add 1/2 cup of water and 1/4 cup bread flour together.  With a wooden specula, stir until there’s no big lumps.

Cook the mixture on low heat, stirring constantly.  When the dough turns slightly translucent and thicken, remove from heat and let it cool slightly.

Wrap the TangZhong with a piece of plastic wrap and refrigerate it overnight before use.

To Make The Bread:

Take out the TangZhong 湯種 from the fridge at least an hour before use (I usually leave it on countertop until it's room temperature).

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, add the ingredients in this order: Tang Zhong, warm milk, salt, sugar, butter, bread flour and yeast.  Start the mixer on low and let the ingredients mix for 15 to 20 minutes.  (I use speed #2 all the way as recommended on the stand mixer’s user menu for dough hook, you might want to double check yours.)

Lightly grease your hands and test if the dough is ready by stretching a small portion of the dough.  If it’s elastic and can be stretched into a thin membrane, it’s ready.

Grease a large mixing bowl, set aside.  Remove the mixer’s bowl and dough hook from the stand mixer.  With lightly greased hands, knead the dough in the bowl of the stand mixer a few times.  Turn the dough into the greased mixing bowl and form dough into a ball shape.   Turn the dough once so the top is nicely greased and smoothed.  Cover the mixing bowl with a kitchen towel and place it in a warm place to proof for 45 minutes to an hour, or until the dough doubled in size.

With lightly greased hands, deflate the dough and knead it a few times inside the mixing bowl.  Evenly divided the dough into 24 pieces and form each portioned dough into ball shape, seam sides down, and place them back into the mixing bowl.  Cover the mixing bowl with kitchen towel and let the dough balls rest for 15 minutes.

This would be the perfect time to prepare the red bean paste fillings.  Simply roll the red bean paste into 24 1-inch balls.  Set aside

On a lightly floured surface, work with one portion of the dough at a time.  Gently knead the dough a few times. Form it into a smooth round ball.  With a lightly floured rolling pin, gently roll the dough into an 3-inch circle.

Place one of the red bean paste ball in the middle of the dough disk, then gently pull the sides up and pinch the dough to close the seams.  Place the filled dough seams side down into a mini tin foil cup (or onto a silpat lined baking sheet).  Repeat with the rest of the dough and fillings. 

Place filled buns in a warm place to proof second time.  About 30 to 40 minutes, or until double in size.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare the egg wash by beating the egg and a teaspoon of water until well combined.  Gently brush egg wash on top of the buns, sprinkle with sesame seeds and bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on wiring rack.

234edited

84 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thank you. Glad you like them. :) Hope you're having a fantastic weekend so far.

      Delete
  2. Oh my goodness! These buns are so impressive Amy! They look absolutely perfect and so professional looking - way BETTER than my local Asian bakery store. Fantastic job Amy and have a great weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Kelly. Hehe...I need to be my own bakery these day because the nearest decent Asian bakery is still quite a drive for me. :) I'm just glad that homemade works out great for me.

      Delete
  3. loved them...they look so fresh and puffed...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Oh...these are really good. :P We love soft and fluffy buns/breads in this house. Hope you're enjoying your weekend so far.

      Delete
  4. Time for breakfast! These buns look super soft and beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Angie. Yes, the TangZhong method is keeping the buns amazingly soft. :)

      Delete
  5. Wow - this is amazing, Amy! I don't know if I'm up for the challenge but I just love seeing how you make these. Looks perfect and I bet they taste amazing with the homemade bean paste! The dainty size is just right; I could totally eat 3 for breakfast too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Monica. These buns are not hard to make at all, just need a little bit time on hand, that's all. :) Let me know if you ever try it. The homemade bean paste is truly amazing.

      Delete
  6. I bet .... well no doubt about it, these mini red beans buns super yummy. I loves this too. Wish I can try it from you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wish I can send a few over and share. These were really good. :P

      Delete
  7. the buns look great, Amy! I am a big fan of tangzhong method too for making buns, as it does make the bread softer. i haven't made azuki for a long, long time,and usually fill baos with it, but bookmarking your paste recipe for my next try:-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Jehanne. I agree, tangzhong method is just amazing. Let me know how it goes if you try the red bean paste. I just made another batch today to make more treats with it.

      Delete
  8. Amy these are AMAZING! and amazing are also the pictures. I am sure followers of Panissimo would love to get to know your buns. Would you consider submitting them to this month's bread collection? submission are still open until tomorrow. Rules for submission here: http://www.myitaliansmorgasbord.com/2013/06/01/panissimo-june-edition-is-now-openpanissimo-di-giugno-e-aperto/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for inviting me to share this recipe. As you can tell, I'm totally late in replying my commends and blog hop. Good news is, I can always join in for fun the next time. Love your blog. ;) Hope you're enjoying your weekend so far. Take care.

      Delete
  9. Oh Amy!, what a lovely recipe. Your buns look so beautiful and soft...
    We' ll try to do them.
    Pictures, wonderful, as usual.
    Regards and happy weekend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Laurel. Glad you love these buns too. You bet, the bread is super soft because of the TangZhong. Let me know how you like them if you try. Have a wonderful weekend.

      Delete
  10. These look appetizng & YUMMY! Never tried TangZhong method to make buns before but these buns look really good! Will give it a try soon. Thanks for sharing . ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Kit. Let me know how it goes if you try. Hope you'll love these buns as much as my family does.

      Delete
  11. Very cute mini azuki buns!!!! Wish to try this recipe :) thanks for sharing, Amy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Esther. Let me know how you like them if you try. Have a wonderful weekend.

      Delete
  12. I've asked you this before, and I'll ask you again. When are you starting a bakery??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL....I wish. And if I really open my bakery one day, you'll get special discount, Belinda. ;)

      Delete
  13. They are such cute looking buns, love the bite size version. A perfect Canape.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Yes they are perfectly small. :) Wish you a beautiful week ahead.

      Delete
  14. They look yummy and so petite. I think I can eat 5 at go although I am a small eater but I have a weakness for red bean anything. Simply delicious!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Mun. I agree, I can't resist the red beans. :) Wish you a wonderful week ahead.

      Delete
  15. This mini buns are so so cute!! Love adzuki buns!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Kiran. Yeah, I love adzuki anything. :P

      Delete
  16. These are so cute! And they look so professional...like something you'd find in a bakery window.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Amy. Hehe...I guess the bakery would make these buns a lot bigger. hahaha..these are special size for my little ones. :)

      Delete
  17. I've never tried adzuki beans but I make the Tang Zhong and thanks to you Amy I am a bread rock star! I'm going to try the buns. Where did you get the tart tins?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm really glad that you and your family love the Tang Zhong bread, isn't it amazing? I got the mini tart tins at a bakery supply store in Hong Kong. Not sure if baking stores in the States might have them. I've gotta go check. But I made these buns without the tins as well and they came out just as good. :)

      Delete
  18. WOW! I could eat a few of these buns in one sitting they are so mini! yummy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Jeannie. Yes, I can easily eat a few in one sitting too. :P

      Delete
  19. These look wonderful and I love your blog! Great work!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your sweet comment, Dan. :) You have a beautiful blog yourself too.

      Delete
  20. ils sont jolis ces petits pains et donnent envie de les goûter
    bon dimanche

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. je vous remercie. Heureux que vous aimez ces mini-brioches trop. Passez une bonne semaine. Prenez soin.

      Delete
  21. Really cute buns! I love filled buns like this, and we so rarely make them - something we need to correct. These look terrific, and your instructions are so through and clear. Thanks so much for this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I make bread and buns at least a few times a week. :) I just need to post more recipes to share. The fillings for the buns are endless. Glad you love these.

      Delete
  22. Estupendos bollos receta muy buena y linda,saludos y abrazos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gracias. Me alegra que te estas mini bollos de frijol rojo también. Que tengan una semana maravillosa por delante.

      Delete
  23. So much filling! That's the best part of a homemade bread recipe. Can put in as much filling as you like. :-)

    ~Jayne

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hehe...you read my mind, Jayne. I love to stuff my buns as much as possible. :) I stop buying buns from bakeries cos they are always only 1/3 filled! hahaha....

      Delete
  24. I love the mini versions because these are delicious and so attractive. Red beans paste is my fav and when placed and baked into the dough cases, its double explosion of flavors.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Navaneetham. Glad you like red bean paste and this mini buns version. :) Wish you a wonderful week.

      Delete
  25. Mmm... another delicious creation1 And beautifully photographed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ladyfi. :) Glad you like my creation and photography.

      Delete
  26. Beautiful pictures! (:
    http://bakingmakeshappy.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Glad you like them. :) Have a wonderful week.

      Delete
  27. These look so good! I would love to make them for my children's school lunches and for picnics. I will have to pin them. Somehow I missed coming over to your site recently. I will have to follow you so I don't miss future posts :/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much. I'm glad you love these and yes, they'll be perfect for school lunch and picnics. :) I know....with the Google reader going away, I'm adding blogs I love to my Feedly list and email subscription too. You're already on my list. ;)

      Delete
  28. Replies
    1. thank you. :) Glad you like these mini buns too.

      Delete
  29. What a great post. I always learn so much from you! Great pictures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Dear. Glad you like the post and the pictures.

      Delete
  30. These are absolutely gorgeous buns, Amy! I love how petite they are and yes...that means I would eat many! I love the shine to the tops and your photos are just beautiful! : )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Anne. Glad you love the mini size too. :)

      Delete
  31. These look awesome!! I would eat sooo many of these :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ashley. Hehe...I agree, I can eat so many in one sitting. :P

      Delete
  32. Wow, they do look cute, those mini size buns. But alas, I can never handle the Tangzhong method, find it very wet and I always end up adding more flour. I can pop many of these cuties into my mouth and won't get tired of them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hm...do you knead your dough by hand? If so, yes, the Tangzhong method could be quite wet and sticky. I usually let the stand mixer do all the kneading until the dough is nice and smooth so I don't have to "handle" it so much. And I found out that the weather also contribute to the texture of the dough. It's okay to add up to 1/4 cup flour when you knead if the dough is too wet. Hope that helps.

      Delete
  33. Amy, your azuki beans look so cute! I love your plate and actually I have an identical pattern on my bowls brought from Japan! I love them and always regret I haven't bought more plates and different bowl sizes...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Sissi. I love those little plates too. Actually, I got them here in a Japanese store along with matching bowls. I haven't visit Japan for so many years and I know I'll have much fun shopping kitchen essential as well as feasting around town! :P

      Delete
  34. They look so delicious and they are very neat little buns! Love it! I thought I never make home made azuki beans but I really want to try just to make these cute little things!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Oh...hope you'll give these a try. Let me know how it goes if you try them. :)

      Delete
  35. The bread looks so great! I am sure it must smell wonderful when you were baking these. I love the touch of black sesame seeds on them. I have to make them soon!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Yeah, that's one thing I love baking bread at home, the aroma is amazing when the buns are baking. Let me know how it goes if you make them. :)

      Delete
  36. I love how petite and perfectly beautiful these are, would love to try them!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Brenda. Glad to hear you love these mini buns too. :)

      Delete
  37. they looks so cute and yummy..lovely clicks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Gayathri. Glad you like them. Have a wonderful week.

      Delete
  38. These are absolutely adorable! I've had adzuki buns only once and I really did not like them, but I appreciate them for what they are and I'd be willing to make them again if I had someone like you at my house to "taste test" them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :) I used to dislike adzuki bean paste. But it all depends on where I got them. So, I decided to go with homemade so I can control the sweetness and quality of the paste It really depends on your own preference, that's the beauty of homemade paste. Hope you'll give them a second chance one day.

      Delete
  39. The buns are picture perfect and cute.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Asha. Glad you love these mini buns.

      Delete
  40. These are too beautiful Amy. You have incredible skill with the final shaping. And I love the golden colour!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I think it's easier to control the shapes when the buns are smaller. ;) Glad you love these mini buns.

      Delete
  41. These buns look so cute and yummy! One of my favorite Chinese type of food would be buns. Sweet and savory ones!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Lynna. I love all kinds of buns too. Glad you love these mini sweet buns. :)

      Delete
  42. 很可爱的迷你面包。Like ~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Joceline. Glad you like them. :) Have a great weekend.

      Delete