"An pan" is buns filled with sweet bean
paste. "An" = red bean jam, aka anko. Pan
= bread. Bean bread. Doesn't sound tasty, but this is
good for snacks or desserts.
I now have two or three versions of this recipe. The simple "how
to make it" version is on this page right here.
If, however, you'd like to read the blow-by-blow comedy
of errors that was my first attempt at making an pan,
here it is. The third
recipe uses cafeteria roll dough, which is not so
What you'll need (makes 3 dozen!):
1 package of dried, active yeast
1/4 cup of
1 cup of boiling water
1 cup of sugar
4 1/2 cups of flour
yolk or melted butter (optional - bun coating)
sesame seeds (see above)
2.5 cups of anko, canned
Wax paper or some other surface for
working the dough
A free afternoon
Mix the yeast with the warm water in a cup. In a
large mixing bowl combine the boiling water, shortening,
sugar, and salt. Mix well to melt the shortening. Let
it cool to lukewarm. Then pour in the yeast mixture.
Beat the two eggs and mix 'em in. Then add flour until
you have soft, smooth dough. (You may need a little
more flour than the 4.5 cups I listed. Another half-cup
ought to be enough.)
Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface. Wax
paper is a good idea. Then grease a large bowl lightly
and put the dough in. Turn the dough so the whole surface
gets a little grease. (You can swing the bowl around
in a circular fashion to rotate the dough inside.)
Then cover the bowl and leave it alone for 60 to 90
minutes, until the dough has risen and doubled its size.
Punch the dough down. Literally, smack it down
with your fist to deflate that ball! Then roll it back
into a ball shape and cover. Let it rest for 10 minutes.
Grease a cookie sheet or three while you're waiting.
Now comes the fun (read: tedious) part. Flour
your hands and the wax paper lightly, and have more
flour ready to use. Pull out walnut-sized globs of dough.
Roll them into balls; flatten them into circles. Put
a tablespoon of anko in the center and pull the dough
over it, pinching the edges shut. (Sometimes the edges
don't want to stay together. Pinch well!) Flatten the
dough ball a little and place it on the cookie sheet.
Repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat.
I had a bit of fun varying the shapes and sizes I
made. You can put one round down, put a lot of
bean paste on it, and cover it with another round to
make a big bun. You can make little ones, and fold the
dough up envelope style, or make little triangles, or
whatever. At this point anything to relieve the boredom will be welcome, believe me. And you
can customize them so they'll just fit in a bento box
After all this is done check over the batch. Pinch
together any split seams. Then leave it all alone for
45 minutes to an hour so they can rise some more. They
should double their size again. When they have, pinch
any seams together that have come apart again.
If you're going to glaze them, either beat an egg yolk
in a tablespoon of water or melt some butter and brush
it over the tops of the buns-to-be. Then sprinkle sesame
seeds on the tops.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and bake the buns for
15 minutes. Ideally they will be only lightly browned.
If you leave them in for 20 minutes they form a dark
crust, but they still taste fine.