Baozi are a common Chinese food made and eaten all over China. A Westernized Chinese restaurant probably will not carry them; you may need to seek out a Chinese bakery, or the frozen section of your local grocery store that carries Asian products.

Baozi are a steamed bun, usually approximately palm-sized in diameter, made of a smooth cream-colored dough similar to mantou. Some are smooth on top, others have a pinched/pleated top. A smooth top with a red dot or glyph indicates sweet red bean paste filling, but baozi come with everything from barbecued pork to chopped vegetables. One makes a good hearty snack; two is a full meal. They're sold in stalls on the streets in China and Chinatowns, making a quick, inexpensive and portable lunch or breakfast. Highly recommended. Start with the barbecued pork if you are a bit leery; the taste of these is amenable to most Western palates.

Biaozi are often mentioned in connection with jiaozi, serving somewhat similar functions. Basic recipes for both may be found at SOAR under "Chinese," or at

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