This recipe is a mash-up of a Taiwanese Gua Bao (Pork Belly Steamed Bun) and a classic Delicatessen Reuben…with a vegan twist! Smoked Tomato Deli Slices are nestled inside a fluffy steamed bao made in minutes from – wait for it – store-bought crescent roll dough. A dollop of briny kimchi, a drizzle of creamy dressing, crunchy cucumber slices, and fresh scallions are the finishing touches to this messily delicious fusion sandwich created by Joy Martin, our Cooks In The Field Urban Foodie.
1-8 oz package Prepared vegan crescent rolls
1 package Field Roast Smoked Tomato Deli Slices
1/2 cup Vegan kimchi, chopped
1/4 cup Cucumber rounds, thinly sliced
1/4 cup Scallions, chopped, green parts only
2 TBS Vegan mayo
2 tsp Ketchup
Set a steamer basket over a wok or skillet filled with an inch or so of water and place over medium/medium-high heat to bring to a strong simmer. While water is heating, cut some parchment paper into 8 (4 inch by 5 inch) rectangles.
Release the crescent roll dough from its tube packaging but don't roll it out - instead, leave it in its cylindrical form. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into eight even pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, then use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a slight oval. The easiest way to form the oval is to first roll each ball into a circle about 3 inches in diameter, then use the last couple rolls of the pin to stretch the circle out just a bit into an oval.
To form each bao, fold each oval in half and position on one half of a parchment piece. Open the "mouth" of the bao and fold the other half of the parchment piece inside the bao, then close the "mouth" to trap the parchment inside (placing the parchment like this prevents the bao from sticking to both the steamer and itself while it steams). Complete all the bao.
Once water is at a strong simmer, carefully (remember: steam = HOT) place the bao on their parchment pieces in the steamer basket - don't overcrowd, as these will puff quite a bit. Cover the steamer and steam the bao for 10-12 minutes, or until the dough is puffy, smooth, and springs back when gently touched.
Carefully remove from heat and allow to cool. Bao can be served warm or at room temperature. To reheat, loosely wrap bao in a moist paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds.
Make a quick Russian dressing by stirring together the vegan mayo and ketchup in a small bowl.
To assemble, gently open one bao and tuck in a few slices of cucumber on the bottom.
If desired, you can heat the deli slices briefly in the microwave until warm. Fold one deli slice into quarters and place on top of the cucumbers, then spoon a bit of kimchi on top of the deli slice. Drizzle in some of the Russian dressing, followed by some scallions. Complete this process until all the bao are assembled, then enjoy!