I finally found it.
The search for a good mantou, a.k.a. chinese steamed bun, that remains soft even when cold, is over.
I found this delightful recipe at Do What I Like. The best part of this recipe? It does not contain baking powder.
Fluffy mantou (adapted from Do What I Like)
- 150 grams cake flour
- 50 grams plain flour
- 1/2 tsp instant yeast
- a pinch of salt
- 110 ml of water
- 200 grams plain flour
- 100 grams cake flour
- 5 grams instant yeast
- 70 grams sugar
- 175 ml milk
- 70 grams starter dough
- 1 tbsp corn oil
- Prepare a steamer with enough water to boil for half hour.
- For the starter dough, mix everything in a bowl and knead until the dough is smooth. Let it proof for 45 minutes. Take out 70 grams and store the rest for next use. I placed mine in a freezer bag and in the freezer.
- For the main dough, mix everything, except corn oil, in the bowl and knead until dough is formed. Add in oil and knead until it is smooth and passes windowpane test.
- Lightly flour work area and roll the dough to a rectangle around 40 x 20 cm. Brush surface with a bit of water, then roll, like a swiss roll cake, from the longer side. Slice the dough into 8 pieces and place on small pieces of grease proof paper. Place mantou in the steamer, making sure enough space is left for the dough to proof. Proof for 1 hour.
- After an hour, the dough should have doubled. With the mantou in the steamer, turn on the heat to medium. When the water boils and you can see steam, start the timer for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, turn off the heat. Carefully and slowly open the lid just a bit, allowing the steam to escape. Leave the mantous for 3 minutes. This helps prevent excessive shrinking.
- Serve warm or cold, plain or with jam/peanut butter.
This recipe can be used to make bao with filling. I shall attempt soon.