Saturday, 25 December 2010

Recipe: Bor Lor Bao/ 菠蘿包/ Pineapple Bun

One of my favourite bao’s or buns is bor lor bao or pineapple bun. The most delicious part of this bao is the top part. It’s a crunchy flaky topping, which is actually quite hard to make at home. The main reason that it’s hard to make is because it’s hard to find the main ingredient to make it crunchy and flaky. The ingredient I’m talking about is Ammonia Bicarbonate.


Makes 15 pieces

Sweet Crust
250g Pastry Flour
110g Sweet Butter - room temperature
200g Caster Sugar
4g Baking Soda
4g Baking Powder
25g Evapourated milk
25g Eggs - lightly beaten
1 small pinch Ammonia Bicarbonate - needed to generate the signature checkered top that resembles the epicarp of a pineapple

Chinese Style Bread Dough
500g Bread Flour
120g Caster Sugar
75g Eggs - lightly beaten
40g Butter - melted
20g Evapourated Milk
5g Salt
6g Active Dry Yeast
175g Water
25g Lukewarm Water - 37ºC

Egg Wash
1 egg + equal amount of water


Sweet Crust
  1. Using an electric mixer, slowly incorporate sugar, butter, lard and evapourated milk
  2. Mix the baking powder, soda, Ammonia Bicarbonate and eggs into the butter mixture
  3. Gently fold the pastry flour into the butter mixture
  4. Allow the mixture to sit in the refrigerator for an hour prior use

Chinese Style Bread
  1. Dissolve 1 tsp of sugar and yeast with 25g of water at 37 oC, allow it to stand for 5 minutes
  2. Dissolve the remaining sugar in 175g water
  3. Add eggs, evapourated milk, yeast mixture, flour and salt and into 2, knead with hand until all ingredients come together to form a rough dough
  4. Gradually add butter into the dough, one tbs at a time, knead until incorporated before adding the next tbs of butter
  5. When all the butter has been added, continue kneading the dough until it becomes a soft and shiny spherical mass, about 10 minutes
  6. Transfer dough into a buttered mixing bowl that is at least double the size of your dough, cover with damp cloth and allow the dough to raise in a warm area for 1 hour or until doubled in size
  7. After the first proof, use your fist to punch the dough to release the carbon dioxide produced by the yeast
  8. Knead the dough briefly to reform a rough spherical shape. let it rest again for 30 mins
  9. Divide dough into 15 pieces
  10. On a floured surface, form each of the pieces into balls by pressing the dough with the palm of the hand and roll in a circular motion
  11. Transfer dough balls onto baking sheets, allow at least 2" gaps between doughs. Cover with damp cloth and allow the allow the doughs to proof for an hour or until doubled in siz

Assembly and Baking
  1. Preheat your oven to 180ºC
  2. Remove the sweet crust mixture from the refrigerator and divide the mixture into 15 pieces
  3. Roll the crust into little balls and flatten them.
  4. Use a knife to press them, so they turn into very thin discs.
  5. After the bread doughs have completed the second proof, press down each dough gently and lightly brush top surfaces with egg wash
  6. Cover each dough with a disc of sweet crust. Brush the surface of discs with egg wash and allow them to stand for 5 minutes. Apply the second layer of egg wash
  7. Bake at 180ºC for 10 minutes on the bottom rack and another 5-10mins on the middle rack.


  1. You are welcomed at my house ANY time. =)

  2. ^LOL

    you are welcomed at my house too! I LOVVVVE bor lor bao =D