My mom called last night and told me, among other things, that our foreign exchange student (from Beijing) picked out some baozi, because I would have liked it. AW! I don’t remember expressing my undying love for stuffed buns, but it is the kind of thing that comes up in conversations, I guess. My mom found them “carbohydrate rich.”
Coincidentally, I’ve been making baozi here! On my own, even, and from scratch, not frozen.
Frozen dumplings would require: 1) a freezer on my part and 2) someone interested in selling frozen dumplings.
So we make do. They’re actually not as hard as I was expecting, and definitely easier than that time we made jiaozi….
I actually found the recipe when I was looking for exciting things to do with lentils. I mean, I could make lentil soup, but lentil soup makes me want to put carrots and potatoes and peppers in it. And, yes, I can get them in Ouidah, but the best word I can use to describe the majority of the carrot selection is “limp” and the last time I got a green pepper there was a grub in it. I still ate it, but took the grub out first.
So, I found this recipe for BBQ lentil and sweet potato baozi and realized I already had all the ingredients except the sweet potatoes. Imagine my delight to find that I can buy 10 small sweet potatoes for about 20 cents! Talk about carbohydrate rich!
The first batch was excellent. The recipe makes 12, which is probably meant to be eaten by more than one person, but can be managed to be eaten by one, if you are willing to eat nothing else all day. I was willing.
The second batch was a half batch and included an experimental filling of eggs and greens and onions ( a more traditional filling for the alley baozi stand back in Beijing). Unfortunately the mysterious greens I got at the market this time were REALL Y BITTER. I shan’t be buying that type of green again. And, the dough was REALLY STICKY. Which is frustrating. Remember to add enough flour folks! Especially if you aren’t using measuring cups.
The third batch was shared with a friend and was, again, exquisite.
If you have any ideas for dumpling fillings, feel free to write them in the comments.