Roujiamo is a must have food sold extensively in the Muslim Quarter in Xi'an. There it is made with lamb or beef. I presumed then it is a Muslim food imported by the Hui Chinese but surprisingly this food is found in records of the Zhou period i.e. well before Islam. In fact it has been adopted from the Han by the Hui and is now seen as a signature food.

The bread buns can be baked in ovens or on steel pans as most commonly seen in Xi'an. The meat can be anything from Beef, Lamb (in other parts of China; Chicken or Pork). It's one food that varies a lot from vendor to vendor.

  • 300g plain flour,
  • 20g baking powder,
  • some warm water.
  • 5 Spice Powder
  • soy sauce
  • white sugar
  • white pepper
  • salt
  • sesame oil
  • garlic
  • Chinese Cooking Wine
  1. Mix the plain flour and baking powder together with small additions of warm water & knead to form a dough. Cover with a cloth to rest for 40-50 mins. Ensure the dough rises as much as possible.
  2. Divide dough into 6 portions and flatten each piece into a round disc or traditionally roll each piece of dough ito a log and wind the log into a tight spiral. The spiral buns have a char pattern on the cooked surface.
  3. Heat up a frying pan without adding oil. Place the dough discs in the pan & use a toothpick to poke 9 holes in the surface on both sides. Cover the pan, watch that the bread does not get burnt. Cook a few minutes per side.
  4. The bread will continue to expand slightly. (Remove when nicely browned & it feels spongy).
  5. It is best to use marbled meats for this dish , for the pork, the best is belly pork.
  6. Cut the meat into small pieces & put into a pot.
  7. For pork:Add 5 Spice Powder some soy sauce, a bit of white sugar, white pepper & salt, sesame oil,garlic and Chinese Cooking Wine.
  8. For Lamb and Beef: mix the meat with Xinjiang Spices and cook.
  9. For chicken you may use a Curry blend such as Kurma powder.
  10. Mix well and add enough water to just cover the meat.
  11. Bring to a boil and then cover the pot & simmer for about 25 mins. If there is still too much water, you can reduce the gravy until thick by simple reduction.

Slice the bun  almost into 2 to form pockets and stuff pieces of meat inside with some gravy. Serve in the hand or on a plate.