This was a bread kneading practice before making the actual siopao. I am a real novice when it comes to bakery. I need practice badly.
I started by mixing 1/4 cup of lukewarm water, 1/8 cup brown sugar and a pinch of instant dry yeast. I let it stood for about 10 minutes. The yeast together with sugar and water will be responsible for bread leavening. The yeast will feed on sugar producing alcohol and carbon dioxide. The elastic dough will entrap air (CO2) resulting to bubble shape air spaces and bread leavening. Brown sugar defies the white siopao tradition.
Mixed 1 cup flour and 1/2 cup brown sugar together and added the yeast mixture. I first used spoon to form the dough then switched to hand kneading method. Then divided it several bite size pieces and set aside for one hour to allow leavening. I never prepared filling of any kind. More cash will go to waste basket in case something went wrong.
There was no change in size after one hour. Still no change after another 30 minutes. Maybe the yeast I incorporated was not active. I also noticed that it was spreading slightly.
Kneading develops flour gluten. My kneading process and time might not be enough.
I repeated the kneading. To replace the non-active yeast, I added Calumet baking powder according to label instruction. Kneaded again until the dough was almost not sticking to hands and table surface. Divided to bite size pieces and let one hour to rise.
At last, the bread rose after one hour. Slight spreading was still noticeable though. I steamed for 15 minutes and the size was almost doubled.
The resulting bread taste and texture were good.