recreating a food memory

Chive Pockets 韭菜盒子

A must-do when we visit London is to eat at Sanbao Chinese Kitchen in Hammersmith. We discovered it when we were wandering around the quaint neighbourhood years ago, and have since made it a regular stop when we visit our London family.

My favourite thing to eat there are their chive pockets. When I discovered a wonderful bao dough in Brendan Pang’s This Is A Book About Dumplings, I decided it was time to recreate this memory.

Micah at MarkusUndMicah – thinking of you because we share so many exciting food inspirations.

Chive Pockets

Makes 12-14 pockets

Bao Dough Ingredients:
  • Cake flour 320g (I mixed 260g plain flour with 60g potato flour/starch)
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 150ml milk (and a little more if the dough is too dry)
  • 15ml vegetable oil
  • pinch salt
Filling Ingredients: 
  • 6 eggs
  • about 100g koo chye 
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • vegetable oil for frying
Making the Dough:
  1. Mix all the ingredients together. Knead until smooth & elastic.
  2. Let the dough rest in a bowl for about 20min.
  3. Flour your work  surface well. Divide into 12-14 balls (depending on the size of the pockets desired)
  4. Roll out each ball into a circle until about 1mm thick.
  5. Keep covered with a damp towel.
Cooking the Filling:
  1. Mince the garlic.
  2. Finely chop the koo chye.
  3. Beat the eggs together.
  4. Fry the garlic & koo chye for a few minutes, until the koo chye is soft.
  5. Remove from heat.
  6. In another pan, scramble the eggs. Turn off the fire and mix in the cooked koo chye.
  7. Leave to cool.
Putting it together:
  1. Use “curry puff” method to fill the pockets (see video below).
  2. Cover with a damp cloth to prevent the pastries from drying out.
  3. Pan fry both sides of each pocket in vegetable oil.
  4. Drain on paper towels.
  5. Enjoy with your favourite chilli sauce.

This post is my contribution to What’s on Your Plate hosted by Donna at RetirementReflections and Deb at TheWidowBadass


    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Bernadette!
      I have found it challenging to find vegetarian dumplings to my taste, which is what started this little project of mine. Hope you enjoy them too!


  1. Hi Ju-Lyn … I think I’ll have to search for Sanbao’s kitchen in Hammersmith when I have a wander around London again … these sound so delightful and tasty – yummy – it’s almost lunchtime! Cheers Hilary


  2. Hi Ju-Lyn it’s my first visit to your blog and I’m coming via #whatsonyourplateblogchallenge. Your recipe sounds delicious and I am definitely going to make this recipe. We are in lockdown at the moment in S.E. Qld so a good time to bake. Thanks for the recipe and lovely to meet you. Sue from Women Living Well After 50


    1. Welcome Sue! I love that we have found each other through Donna & Deb’s challenge. One of the fun and wonderful things about this community is meeting like-minded BlogFriends who also inspire and challenge.

      I have found your site and look forward to chatting with you again!


  3. I’m absolutely going to try this. I have Brendan’s book but haven’t made nearly enough from it. Thanks so much for posting this one.


      1. Sorry, hit send too quickly. It’s in Perth – on the other side of the country. WA has had its borders closed to the rest of Australia for most of the past couple of years.


        1. Ah! I thought maybe on your travels you might have eaten there as you have Brendan’s cookbook. I haven’t either – the cookbook was a gift from another dumpling crazy friend!

          Liked by 1 person

  4. This looks insanely delicious! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe. I had to lookup what koo chye is. Maybe something I need to try growing next year 🙂


    1. I have only recently realised that koo chye (garlic chives) are very different from onion chives (green spring onions). For a long time I couldn’t tell them apart in the supermarket!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Koo chye is “garlic chives” which is different from the more commonly encountered “onion chives”. I find that garlic chives have a stronger flavour than onion chives.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oddly enough, this reminds me of the kuchai-ah dumpling here in the Philippines! Although, it’s a combination of meat and chives with just one egg to bind the filling together.


    1. The dough of this one is more bao-like. I made another one using a dumpling wrapper which is more like the typical kuchai-ah dumpling (although I used firm tofu instead of pork).

      Liked by 1 person

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