MISC RECIPES - Steamed Buns (Mantou/Pau)

Pumpkin Kaya Pau (Steamed Pumpkin Buns)

March 07, 2018 | Recipe by Bake with Paws

Making pau or steamed bun is fun as takes a much shorter time compared with bread.  Our family loves pau.  I always get so tempted every time I see the white and soft paus sold at coffee shops.  I don’t buy any as I am afraid of the possible unhealthy ingredients and additives that may have been used. Making them at home, I know exactly what goes into the recipe. I used unbleached pau flour instead of Hong Kong Pau flour.  Hong Kong Pau flour will yield the nice white colour and a fine texture.  However, unbleached flour is healthier.  

Initially, I wanted to make Tau Sar Pau.  But, I don’t have red bean at home.  So, ended up making Pumpkin Kaya Pau instead.  My mother in-law bought a big pumpkin and we made good use of it by turning it into Pumpkin Kaya.  I prefer to make everything from scratch.

This steamed bun is so delicious.  The Pumpkin Kaya goes very well with this slightly salty pau dough where I reduced the sugar and added a little bit of salt. My family loves it so much it disappeared the same night.  I hope you will like it too.

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.

Recipe - Pumpkin Kaya Pau

Yields:  12 Buns


Dough for Bun:
300g pau flour (low protein flour)
15g caster sugar
1/4 rounded tsp salt
1 tsp (3g) instant yeast
155g water, room temperature
10g vegetable oil (I used olive oil)

Pumpkin Kaya:
Please refer here for recipe.

12 pieces (2.5” X 2.5”) baking parchment paper

  1. To prepare the pumpkin kaya filling:
    1. The night before freezes the pumpkin kaya into the ice cube mould in freezer. 
  2. To pre pau skin:
    1. Combine water and yeast in a bowl of electric stand mixer.  Then add in the rest of the ingredients. Mix the dough with the paddle attachment until all come together, smooth and soft around 5 minutes  You can use hook attachment too.  But, I find paddle attachment works better for me.
    2. Shape into a ball.  Put in back in the same mixing bowl, cover and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
  3. Shaping:
    1. Transfer the dough to a clean surface slightly dusted with flour, divide dough into 12 equal portions (approx. 40g each).  Please use a kitchen scale if you want to be exact.   
    2. Shape each dough into a ball.  
    3. Roll a dough ball into a 3.5-inch disc, the edges slightly thinner than the centre. 
    4. Place a pumpkin kaya filling in the centre.  Gather up the edges to seal and shape into round ball.  Place the bun on the prepared parchment paper.
    5. Spread the buns on the bamboo steamer about 1 inch apart as the dough will rise. Let the buns rise until about 70%  from its original size about 30 minutes - 45 minutes a warm area. 
  4. To steam:
    1. Prepare the steamer.  Cover the top with a kitchen towel. This will prevent steamer water dropping on the bun, to get a smooth skin.  Steam for 15 minutes over the low medium heat.
    2. Once it’s done transfer the bamboo steamer away from the water and let it stand for another 5 minutes before removing the cover. With this, the buns will not shrink after cooling down.


  1. Hi, as i understand, low protein flour= cake flour. do i need to buy pau flour to make pau. Or i can use cake flour. Tq

    1. Hi there,

      Thank you for dropping by. I have not tried cake flour to make pau. But, it should work too. I have seen people used cake flour to make pau.

      Cheers & happy baking :)


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