Sunday, July 14, 2013

Sharing my friend Chef Arti's Challah bread recipe

I had the privileged to take some awesome bread making classes from Chef Arti Beimler at South Seattle Community College 2 summer ago. His recipes and techniques are a valuable resource to my bread making repertoire. He is an awesome "Bread Master". If you ever have the opportunity, try to take one of his classes. The skills you learn will help you to make decent bread from just about any recipe. And if you run into issues, he is a great resource to help you to figure out what you did wrong. His egg/oil based dough for making traditional Challah is one of the best bread dough recipes I have.

Chef Arti's Challah bread recipe for making baked Cha Siu Baos

25.3 oz/718g Bread Flour
11.4 oz/323g water
5 oz/144g eggs (3 large eggs)
.4 oz/10g salt
3 oz/86g sugar
.5 oz/15g Instant Yeast
.5 oz/15g Vanilla Extract
1.8 oz/50g Oil

Optional fillings:
A bag of chocolate chunks or chips
Nutella and chocolate
Ham and cheese
BBQ sauce with Aidell's Chicken and apple sausages
Cha Siu filling, see Chef Lo's Cha Siu Filling below

Place all ingredients in bowl.
Stir mixture in bowl, folding as you turn the bowl.
Keep mixing until you form a rough dough.
Knead in bowl to the sides are mostly clean and gluten net is beginning to become visible.
Let rest for 10 minutes in bowl. (Autolyse)
Transfer to bench.
Knead until you can form a ball.
Clean bowl and add oil to bowl.
Put dough into bowl and roll it around covering the ball of dough with oil.
Let dough sit in bowl for 45-60 minutes to ferment.
Pour out dough onto bench.
Press gently on the dough to redistribute the fuel for yeast.
Take the side furthest from you and fold it to the middle, they left to the right.
Take the side closest to you and fold it to the middle, the left to right. Then place smooth side up back in bowl.
Let dough sit for 45 minutes to ferment and develop flavor.
Pre shape, and let rest for 5 minutes.
Braid or fill

Note: This dough is great for making into baked Cha Siu bao. The recipe makes 25 buns, portion the dough into 49g each, then filled each one with a tablespoon of filling.

Chef Lo's Cha Siu Filling (BBQ pork filling)
This recipe is from Fine Cooking, Chef Lo shares her recipe and techniques for creating the filling and steamed buns at home. Original recipe: The filling needs to be made the day before so it has time to cool down and firm up in the refrigerator.

For the filling

1/2 cup lower-salt chicken broth ***Note: I've added an extra 1/4 cup of chicken broth to make a saucier filling.
2 Tbs./28g oyster sauce
2 Tbs./28g ketchup
5 tsp./25g granulated sugar
4 tsp./12g cornstarch
1 Tbs./18g dark soy sauce
Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper ***Note: No extra salt required, found the filling is plenty salty.

1 recipe Chinese Barbecued Roast Pork *** Note: I had about a pound of BBQ pork, small diced.

2 Tbs. peanut oil ***Note: I used olive oil, I do not have peanut oil in the house.
1 small yellow onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice (1/2 cup)
1 Tbs./13g Shaoxing (Chinese rice wine or Japanese Mirin is fine too)
1-1/2 tsp. Asian sesame oil

To make the filling:

In a medium bowl, stir or whisk the broth, oyster sauce, ketchup, sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper. Finely dice enough of the barbecued roast pork to yield 1-1/2 cups (about 6 oz.). Heat a wok over high heat for 30 seconds. Add the peanut oil and swirl to coat. When a wisp of white smoke appears, in about 30 seconds, add the onion. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring often, until golden-brown, about 6 minutes.

Add the pork, increase the heat to high, and stir-fry to combine, 2 to 3 minutes. Drizzle the wine from the edge of the wok into the pork mixture and stir well. Reduce the heat to medium.

Make a well in the center of the mixture and pour in the sauce. Stir until the mixture thickens, about 3 minutes. Add the sesame oil and mix well. Refrigerate until cool.