Dim Sum Taro Dumplings or Yam Puff (芋头角)



Those who like yam will like this dim sum item, some sweet barbecue pork being wrapped in a dough made of yam.. I love this item since young and surprisingly, this yam puff was not sold in the dim sum restaurant in Kuching, it was sold in special kuih stalls basically.. What I have prepared is based on what I have eaten since young but very closed to dim sum version except the outlook.


As per Wikipedia,

“Taro dumpling is a variety of dim sum served within Chinese cuisine. It is a standard dish in dim sum restaurants in Hong Kong and around the world. Among overseas Chinatowns, it is often sold as a Chinese pastry.The outer shell is made from a thick layer of taro that has been boiled and mashed. The filling is made from seasoned ground pork. The dumpling is deep fried, and the outermost layer of taro becomes crisp, light, and fluffy.” (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taro_dumpling)


I am happy with this adventure but what I cannot understand is why my deep fried pastry is not as beautiful as those sold in the dim sum pastry.   Some claims that in order to achieve that special effect, vegetable shortening and wheat starch must be used and very hot oil need to be used for deep frying ..


I did not achieve that effect in terms of look but as far as texture is concerned, it is really crispy on the outside. Well, who cares,  is it not what foodies are looking for? However, I hope that readers that tried this recipe will be able to get that effect since we are using the same recipe.



Recipe adapted from : 蜂巢芋角from Eupho Café – 愛在廚房

Serving size : About 12 yam puff or taro dumplings.



  • 500 grams of yam or taro (芋头)
  • 120 grams of lard or vegetable shortening (猪油或白油)
  • 120 grams of wheat starch (澄粉)
  • 50 grams of hot water (热开水)
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar (白糖)苏打粉)
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda (
  • Pinches of five spice powder (五香粉)
  • Pinches of salt (盐巴)



  • 200 grams of diced barbecue pork (叉烧)
  • 1 big onion – diced (大葱)
  • 1 tablespoons of sesame oil (麻油)
  • 2 tablespoons of castor sugar (细砂糖)
  • 2 tablespoons of Chinese cooking wine (烹饪酒)
  • 2 tablespoons of oyster sauce (耗油)
  • 2 tablespoons of dark soya sauce (not in picture) (酱油)
  • About 3 tablespoons of corn starch/potato starch with 5 tablespoons of water (3勺生粉或玉米粉加5勺的水)




  • In the frying pan, add 2 tablespoons of cooking oil, sauté the onions until fragrant. Add in the barbecue pork and stir fry until well mixed which took about 1-2 minutes. Add in the cooking wine, oyster sauce, sesame oil, sugar, oyster sauce and dark soya sauce. Stir fry for another 2 minutes. Add in the starch solution and off the heat when the starch solution turns transparent. If it is not sticky enough, add in more starches. Set aside for cooling.

 PicMonkey Collage1

  • Steam the yam until soft . Use a fork to mash .. Set aside for cooling.

  • In a bowl, sift the baking soda, wheat start, and 5 spice powder.  Stir until well mixed.

PicMonkey Collage2

  • Add in the hot water, use a chopstick to stir until a sticky dough is form. Add the mashed taro or yam, followed by the vegetable shortening or lard. Use hand to knead until it form a pliable dough. If it is too sticky, add a bit more wheat starch . Pick out those yam cubes that have not been mashed. Divide equally into 10-12 dough.

PicMonkey Collage3

  • Take a dough, shape round, flatten it, seal the edges, and shape oval in shape.

  • In a pot of hot oil, using high heat to deep fry  the yam puff until the puff is golden brown in colour. To test the readiness of the oil, pinch a small dough into the hot oil and if it floats up within one second, it is considered as suitable for deep frying. Once golden brown, drained and best served hot as a dim sum.



I suspect my oil temperature is not optimal when I deep frying my dough. A few trial and error will be needed as practises make perfect. I will try again and update all on the next attempt if I am able to achieve the restaurant dim sum bee hive look. 


Hope you like the post today. cheers and have a nice day.




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