For the past few months, I’ve been playing Blade and Soul. When the game first came out I started leveling a summoner. The summoner gameplay wasn’t what I wanted. Dealing with pet AI can be frustrating sometimes. I quickly switched over to a blade master and found myself having a lot more fun. I played that character until the first major content patch with the introduction of the warlock. I decided to give it a try and immediately fell in love with it. First goal was to get him to 45 before the bonus event ended. After reaching that goal, it was time to start working on gearing him up. Unfortunately for me, NCSOFT released the next large content update which increased the level cap to 50. I slowly upgraded the items I could afford while leveling him to 50. Today my warlock, Zaude, is level 50 and Hongmoon level 6 with his attack power sitting just over 500. I’ve seen all the current dungeons at least once and have participated in the soul stone plains several times with my cerulean brethren. With today’s big patch I’m excited to see the next section of the story and to continue Zaude’s adventure to being the strongest he can be.
There aren’t many food items in Blade and Soul. Most of the food are items you can pick up from the in-game store. The most iconic food item in Blade and Soul is the dumpling. Your character always carries several handfuls of them in their inventory. You use these little snacks to regain all your health between combat. This week we will be working on some short-rib stuffed bao. The dough recipe is the one that I’ve found to work best for steamed bao. The filling is one that took a little bit of work. During my first try I decided to add a bit of the sauce that the meat was cooking in. This unfortunately led to a few of my bao becoming overly soggy. I decided to leave the sauce out and was very happy with the end result. This recipe does take a good amount of time to cook and prep but the end result will fill you up and prepare you for anything that comes your way.
Results: 12-16 buns
Dough from LA Times
1 ½ tsp yeast
¾ cup warm water
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flours
3 lbs short ribs
2 tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup hoisin
½ cup rice wine
⅓ cup brown sugar
4 cups beef stock
2 lemongrass stalks
2 inch ginger
2 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
Preheat your oven to 375℉. Place the ginger, lemon grass, cinnamon sticks and star anise on a baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes. Generously season the short ribs with salt and pepper.
Once the baking time has passed, remove the tray and reduce the oven heat to 325℉. Place a dutch oven (or other large oven safe pot) with olive oil over medium-high heat.
Add the garlic, lemongrass, ginger, cinnamon sticks and star anise. Allow this to cook for about 5 minutes. Remove and place on a plate. Cook each of the short ribs until all the sides are browned. You will have to do this in batches – do not overcrowd the pan. Place the browned short ribs on a plate when they are done.
After all the meat has been browned, add the garlic, lemongrass, ginger, cinnamon sticks and star anise back to the pot. Add the brown sugar and mix it with the other ingredients. Pour the soy sauce, hoisin, rice wine and beef stock.
Add the meat and bring to a slight boil. Place the dutch oven (covered) in the oven and cook for 3-4 hours or until the meat is tender.
While the meat is cooking it is time to make the dough. In a bowl mix the yeast, water and oil. Allow this to rest for 5 minutes or until the yeast becomes active.
In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the flour, sugar and baking powder. Set the mixer to the lowest setting and slowly add the yeast mixture. Mix until it all comes together.
Place the dough in a oiled up bowl and cover. Let it rest until you are ready to start making the bao.
After the meat is done cooking it is time to prepare the filling. Take the beef and shred it in a bowl.
Add the cilantro and green onions. Salt and pepper to taste.
When you are ready to make the bao, place water in a pot with a steamer basket and bring to a boil.
Take your dough and split them into small portions of about 50 grams. To make a bao, take one of the dough portions and roll it out into a circle. Avoid making it too thin.
Add a small portion of meat. It is very important to avoid overfilling these. Take one of the ends of the dough and pinch it with the opposite end.
Pinch the other two flat edges upwards. You should have something that looks similar to the left picture. Next, take two of the corners and pinch them towards the center.
Take the other corners and pinch in the same way. After it has all been pinched together twist the bunched group to seal the bao completely shut.
Place a small piece of parchment paper on the bottom of the bao and then place it in the steam basket. Place 4-6 bao in the basket and then let it steam for 12-15 minutes.