Spicy Lamb Buns w/ Honey Soy Drizzle

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

In China–Beijing especially, it seems, you’ll see a lot of things served with bread–pillowy soft steamed buns, doughy pancakes, and small hollowed-out bread “cups” that you can fill up with meat and vegetable fillings. Yes, here in China, the carb fest extends far beyond just rice and noodles.

In the spirit of blissful carbohydrate intake–with a wanton disregard for fad diets everywhere, we made these Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle. They’re the perfect combination of perfectly cooked spicy lamb, crunchy herbs and veg, an amazing sauce, and soft, buttery bread. Need I say ANY more?

The recipe for the bread used here was adapted from Half Baked Harvest’s fabulous homemade naan recipe. With a few modifications, it’s the perfect vehicle for all these amazing, savory ingredients.

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

For the lamb:

  • 12 oz. lamb loin (any tender cut will work. leave fat on the lamb)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin powder or cumin seeds, crushed roughly in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Sichuan pepper powder (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons oil

For the buns:

  • 1 ½ teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • ½ teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • Sesame seeds

For the toppings:

  • 1/2 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 large carrot, julienned
  • 3 scallions, julienned
  • A handful of fresh mint leaves
  • A handful of fresh cilantro

Start by marinating the lamb. Combine the cumin, cayenne, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and Sichuan pepper powder, if using, and rub it all over the lamb. Set aside to marinate in the fridge while you assemble the buns.

To make the buns, start by dissolving the sugar in the hot water in a medium bowl. Once the water has cooled slightly (it should be warm, but not hot), stir in the yeast until dissolved and let stand for ten minutes. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Once the yeast mixture is foamy, whisk in the milk and yogurt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix it all together to form a dough. Knead until the dough comes together into a soft, slightly sticky ball (add a little more flour if necessary, but the dough should still be relatively sticky). Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour.

Roll the dough out until it’s about an eighth of an inch thick (it will puff up quite a bit while cooking). Cut circles in the dough (about 4 inches in diameter. We just used a small rice bowl to cut out the circles). Continue to re-roll and cut more circles until all the dough is used up. Brush one side with butter and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Leave the dough circles on a floured board and cover with a damp towel.

Now heat a cast iron pan or skillet until almost smoking. Add 2 tablespoons oil and sear the lamb on all sides, until you get a nice, dark crust on the outside of the meat. Lower the heat to medium and continue cooking for another 7-12 minutes until it reaches your desired doneness. Set the meat aside on a plate to rest.

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

While that’s happening, make the drizzle by heating a tablespoon of oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the honey, vinegar, and soy sauce and allow it to bubble until it becomes syrupy. Set aside.

Now, cook your buns (this doesn’t take long at all!). Heat a pan over medium heat and brush the pan lightly with melted butter. Add the dough circles to the pan, sesame side facing up. Cook for 1-2 minutes and flip. Cook for another 1-2 minutes on the other side and take out of the pan.

To assemble, grab one of your buns, add some sliced lamb…

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

Along with carrot, scallions, mint, cilantro, and a drizzle of sauce.

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

Spicy Lamb Buns with Honey Soy Drizzle by thewoksoflife.com

 

Spicy Lamb Buns w/ Honey Soy Drizzle

Spicy Lamb Buns w/ Honey Soy Drizzle

Ingredients

For the lamb:
12 oz. lamb loin (any tender cut will work. leave fat on the lamb)
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin powder or cumin seeds, crushed in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon Sichuan pepper powder (optional)
2 tablespoons oil
For the buns:
1 ½ teaspoons sugar
2 tablespoons hot water
½ teaspoon active dry yeast
2 cups all purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup milk
½ cup yogurt
2 tablespoons melted butter
Sesame seeds
For the toppings:
1/2 tablespoon oil
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 large carrot, julienned
3 scallions, julienned
A handful of fresh mint leaves
A handful of fresh cilantro

Start by marinating the lamb. Combine the cumin, cayenne, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and Sichuan pepper powder, if using, and rub it all over the lamb. Set aside to marinate in the fridge while you assemble the buns.

To make the buns, start by dissolving the sugar in the hot water in a medium bowl. Once the water has cooled slightly (it should be warm, but not hot), stir in the yeast until dissolved and let stand for ten minutes. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Once the yeast mixture is foamy, whisk in the milk and yogurt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix it all together to form a dough. Knead until the dough comes together into a soft, slightly sticky ball (add a little more flour if necessary, but the dough should still be relatively sticky). Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour.

Roll the dough out until it’s about an eighth of an inch thick (it will puff up quite a bit while cooking). Cut circles in the dough (about 4 inches in diameter. We just used a small rice bowl to cut out the circles). Continue to re-roll and cut more circles until all the dough is used up. Brush one side with butter and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Leave the dough circles on a floured board and cover with a damp towel.

Now heat a cast iron pan or skillet until almost smoking. Add 2 tablespoons oil and sear the lamb on all sides, until you get a nice, dark crust on the outside of the meat. Lower the heat to medium and continue cooking for another 7-12 minutes until it reaches your desired doneness. Set the meat aside on a plate to rest.

While that’s happening, make the drizzle by heating a tablespoon of oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the honey, vinegar, and soy sauce and allow it to bubble until it becomes syrupy. Set aside.

Now, cook your buns (this doesn’t take long at all!). Heat a pan over medium heat and brush the pan lightly with melted butter. Add the dough circles to the pan, sesame side facing up. Cook for 1-2 minutes and flip. Cook for another 1-2 minutes on the other side and take out of the pan.

To assemble, grab one of your buns, add some sliced lamb, carrot, scallions, mint, cilantro, and a drizzle of sauce.

http://thewoksoflife.com/2014/08/spicy-lamb-buns-w-honey-soy-drizzle/

 

Comments

  1. says

    Nice recipe! You really nailed the medium rare lamb. I’m drooling looking at it now!! Love the savory honey too. Got to try out this one soon :)

  2. says

    Oh wow! I love how you made like little “naan bao”, that is genius. I’ve made her naan, it’s great! I would love to wrap up some herby, spicy, sweet and sour fillings in some of that goodness. Fantastic.

  3. says

    I made these little buns last night and filled them with tahini sauce, pickled onions and falafel. It was awesome! By far the easiest naan-style bread I’ve ever made, the process went really quickly even for a crowd. Rave reviews by my guests. Yum, thanks guys!

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