char siew sou

Char Siew Sou (BBQ Pork Puff) (叉燒酥)

Char Siew Sou is one of my favourite dim sum items. I love the texture and flavour of juicy, tasty char siew wrapped in a flaky pastry. This little parcel really touches my heart (點心), haha!

Making the flaky pastry is quite challenging. This version is an improvement over my 2016 version with an easier method for making the flaky pastry. Also, this recipe yields a really saucy char siew filling. Suffice to say, I’m thrilled with the result.


80 gm low gluten flour
18 gm sugar
50 ml water
15 ml oil

1. Combine flour, sugar and water.
2. Add oil and stir until well combined.
3. Place water dough in the fridge to chill.


90 gm low gluten flour
80 gm butter
Dash of salt

1. Combine flour, butter and salt.
2. Form a dough and place in the fridge to chill.


100 gm char siew (finely diced)
2 tbsp fried onion (or 1/2 cup of chopped onion)
1 tbsp oil
SAUCE: (mix together)
1 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp dark soya sauce
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp maple syrup
Pinch of salt
Dash of white pepper
8 tbs (1/2 cup) of water
Thickener: 2 tbsp cornflour (mixed with 2 tbsp of water)

1. Prepare the sauce and thickener. Set aside ready for use.
2. Heat 1 tbsp of oil. Add onion and char siew and fry for a couple of minutes.
3. Stir in the sauce. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Ensure there is equal amount of sauce to char siew.
5. Thicken the mixture by stirring in the cornflour mixture to a thick sticky char siew mixture. This will ensure a juicy filling. Remove to a flat plate to chill in the fridge.

Step 4. Assemble & Bake (watch video)

1. Remove both water dough and oil dough from the fridge.
2. Sprinkle flour on the pastry board. Roll out the water dough.
Note: During the rolling process, sprinkle flour to prevent the dough from sticking to the board or rolling pin.
3. Place the oil dough in the middle of the water dough.
4. Fold the water dough over the oil dough to completely wrap up the oil dough.
5. Using the rolling pin, hit the dough lightly to flatten it. Roll out the dough.
6. Fold both ends of the dough to the centre. Fold the 2 parts together (like a book). This will create 4 folds.
7. Turn the dough 90° and roll out. Make another 4 folds.
8. Repeat this process 2 more times, making a total of 16 folds.
9. If the dough is too soft (from melting butter), place the dough back into the fridge to chill for 10 minutes.
10. Roll the dough to 3mm thickness. Cut into 12 pieces.
11. Fill each piece with 1 tbsp of filling. Pinch 2 adjacent sides together. Then, gather remaining side and pinch to form a triangular puff. Ensure all sides are fully sealed. Turn over to the smooth side.
12. Brush each puff with beaten egg yolk. Top with a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
13. Bake in a preheated 180°C oven for 20 minutes until golden.

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