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How to cook frozen steam buns

I got some frozen steam buns in Chinatown and tried to cook them. I steamed them in a bamboo steamer (over a wok); one for 15 minutes, the other for 20. I guess they came out done, but in both cases they were wet and gummy. I steamed another one for 15 minutes, then gave it an addiional ten in the toaster oven -- this time it was hard (not dry) but gummy inside. What am I doing wrong? (If I had a microwave, I'd try that, but I don't have one). Any suggestions?

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  1. my wife made me a few dozen vietnamese buns, and we froze them in plastic wrap. i found microwaving them for 2 minutes on 20% and then on high for 20 seconds while wrapped in the plastic wrap worked pretty well.

    1. It sounds like you've steamed them for too long. Try cutting back to 10 minutes. The microwave doesn't work for them anyway. It comes out soft, sometimes, but hardens really quickly, even if you cover them w/ wet paper towels.

      1. Microwave will work on non frozen buns, you will have to experiment with your microwave due to differences in power, starting around 15-25 seconds for a filled bun, less for an unfilled bun. I would check a frozen bun in a hot steamer around 4-5 minutes.

        I use tooth picks and bamboo skewers when learning how to heat new things.

        1. Just a wild guess here....but I have some in my freezer so I am interested...maybe we should thaw first? I better go read the directions....

          1 Reply
          1. re: saticoy

            Don't thaw them out, having them frozen and putting them on the steamer is the best way

          2. When I'm steaming bao, I always cut pieces of parchment, or waxed paper if that's all I have, to set them on, and I never give them more than 12 minutes, always from frozen. Non-fluffy dumplings such as shumai and gyoza get the same time, but with no paper underneath, just a coating of spray grease (I'm not using a bamboo steamer, but a two-part aluminum one.