Char siu bao, also spelled char siu bao, are Cantonese barbecue pork buns (baozi). The buns are filled with barbecue-flavoured cha siu pork. They are served as a type of dim sum during yum cha and are sometimes sold in Chinese bakeries.
Char siu refers to the pork filling; the word bao simply means “bun.”
Although visually similar to other types of steamed baozi, the dough of steamed cha siu bao is unique since it makes use of both yeast and baking powder as leavening.This unique mix of leavening gives the dough of cha siu bao the texture of a slightly dense, but fine soft bread.
Encased in the center of the bun (bao), there is tender, sweet, slow-roasted pork tenderloin called char siu. The char siu is diced, and then mixed into a syrupy mixture of oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, roasted sesame seed oil, rice vinegar, shaoxing wine or dry sherry, soy sauce, sugar and cornstarch.
Steamed BBQ Pork Bun, as part of “Yum Cha”, is often served in tea houses. The time-honored teahouse brands in Guangzhou are Taotaoju, Luyvju, Paxiangju, Nanyuan, Beiyuan, Panxi, Datong, Huiru, Sanru, Duoru, Qiaoxin, Dexin, Zhengxin, Fulaiju, Xihuaju, Meizhenju and so on.