Updated: May 16, 2020
Asian bakery style Sausage buns
I grew up with Asian Bakery style bread. To date I still do occasionally enjoy the sausage buns even though they are often eaten cold. Back then it never really occurred to me to wonder what it would taste like if we could have them warm and fresh out of the oven because I think that's how it should be served. Being away from home for quite some time, I am starting to miss all things home. With weeks of Covid 19 isolation happening and too much time to think, I thought I would share with you the best way to make the Asian style sausage roll and be able to have them straight out of the oven. If you do end up with some leftovers, this bread stays soft for a few days and all you need is wrap it up in aluminium foil and heat it in the oven at 160°C for 5- 10 minutes and you can have them warm like the first day you bake them!
If you are not familiar with the Tang Zhong Method or the Roux Mix, it is a method that I often use to make Asian soft and sweet bread. When making bread with the Tang Zhong method, you simply take out 5% of the bread flour and 5 times the water to the 5% of flour from the original recipe, place them in a pot over low heat and keep stirring until it thickens in to an opaque gel. The Tang Zhong that you have created is then cooled down before adding in with the rest of the ingredients. This roux works to retain water as the starch in the flour swell when you heat the two ingredients together, and when added in to the rest of the ingredients in the final dough, it works to keep the bread moist and soft for a longer period of time. If you are interest in making other bread rolls using the Tang Zhong Method, check out my post on "Coffee Roll".
In the recipe below, I have already worked out the ratios of flour and water (although we are using milk instead of water for this one) All you need to do is just follow the recipe and method as it is.
I also use Frankfurt sausage because they are par boiled and does not release so much fat when heated which can cause the bread to go really greasy. Also because it is pre cooked and packaged, you do not have to worry about the sausage not being cooked enough when the bread is ready to come out from the oven.
At the end of the page I have also shared some short videos on how to plait the buns and what to look for to see if your bread have been mixed enough.
Before you start with the recipe, it is ideal to have some basics in bread making and understanding the key terms that is involved. If you are new to this and want to embark in the adventure, I would recommend that you go through my Pastry Academic Post on "Bread Making Basics" and come back here.
Bakers Flour 15 g
Milk 35 g
Bread Flour 200 g
Plain FLour 85 g
Instant Yeast 5 g
Castor Sugar 10 g
Egg 1 egg
Unsalted Butter (Softened) 28 g
Plain Flour 85 g
Salt 2 g
Frankfurt Sausage 9
Egg 1 Whole egg
Milk 30 g
Whisk the egg and milk together and brush on rolls when ready.
Castor Sugar 50 g
Water 50 ml
Boil the water and whisk in the sugar until fully dissolve. Brush on baked rolls straight out of the oven.
1. Start making the Tang Zhong by heating up the flour and milk together over low heat and constantly stirring until it thickens in to a white paste.
2. Transfer the Tang Zhong (Water Roux Mix) on to a bowl, wrap and cool. You can cool it in the fridge if you want to expedite the process.
3. Mix 35 g of milk and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar from the recipe and heat the mix in the microwave to 35°C. To heat up the milk do not take long at all, it took me 12 seconds in the microwave and can be different for everyone. If you over heat the milk, just leave it to cool.
4. Once the milk+sugar mixture comes to the right temperature, whisk in the instant yeast and let sit at room temperature until it becomes frothy. This process takes roughly around 5 to 10 minutes depending on the kitchen temperature that you are in.
5. When the Tang Zhong have cooled down and the yeast have frothed up, mix all the ingredients together until a smooth dough forms. Keep mixing and do a window test in between mix to check if the dough is ready. For more information about window test, check out the "Window Test" post in my blog.
6. When the dough is fully developed, transfer in to a lightly oiled bow, large enough for the dough to double in size. Cover with tea tower until it doubled in size.
7. When the dough have doubled in size, transfer the dough over to a bench, preferably lightly oiled and not dusted in flour as flour can make the dough dry. Gently press the dough down to knock out some of the air bubbles. Portion the dough in to 9 x 55 g pieces and pre-shape each dough by rolling them in to an oval shape. Leave the portioned and pre-shape dough covered with tea towel for 15 minutes. At this point, you want to preheat the oven to 180°C.
8. Once the pre shaped dough have rested, start by rolling the each dough out to roughly about 12 cm length x 13 cm width. Place a Frankfurt in the centre of the rolled out dough and cut 4 lines on the dough on the left and right side of the Frankfurt making 5 strips of dough on each side. Start by pulling one strip from one side over and overlapping the first strip with the one on the opposite side and repeat the process until you reach the last strip of dough creating a lattice. Tuck in the last strip of dough under by gently stretching it out. Place all the shaped hot dog roll on to a greased pan or on to a pan lined with baking paper leaving enough space in between for the dough to rise again for a final proof.
9. Cover the shaped rolls with tea tower and final proof until the dough starts to feel light when tapped with your hand. Lightly brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake in a pre heated oven at 180°C for 12 to 15 minutes until golden in colour.
10. When the rolls are ready, remove them from the oven and quickly brush them with sugar syrup. Let the buns sit for a few minutes before serving and at first the surface will seem abit tough but after letting it rest a little the bread will soften.
What cooked Tang Zhong should look like
How to plait
How to check if your dough is mixed enough? What is window test?
If you are able to stretch a palm size dough thin enough for you to see through it without breaking, you have fully developed the gluten in the dough and it is ready for bulk fermentation.
The dough is under developed if when you stretch the dough, it feels stiff with resistance and starts to tear. This means that you will need to mix your dough a little longer. As you keep mixing, you will realise the dough starts becoming smoother and softer when the starch has been given enough time to absorb all the water that is in the dough. Therefore, patience is essential in this step.