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Online Shop Food Diary:[From Taiwan] Mainiang – Old-dough Chinese Buns

A revolutionary twist to Chinese Buns. Using old dough for buns-making!

After trying out the buns from 1 Mantou Studio, The Bread and I fell in love with Chinese buns from Taiwan. So, we try out the old dough buns from Mainiang this time!

What is Old Dough?

Using old dough is a traditional way in making buns. People would use natural yeast to let the dough rise in the old times. When you are making gluten products, you will use that particular piece of naturally risen dough in the previous day to mix with warm water and new ingredients. And that particular piece of dough is named as ‘old dough’.

Using old dough can enhance the density, chewy texture of the products and give an incomparable aromatic bun. Similar to sourdough in making pastry, old dough is somehow similar in providing a certain extent of acidity to promote the stability of the dough as a whole and extending shelf life.

What did we order?

。Taro Honey Roll 。
。Brown Sugar and Cheese Roll。
。Mashed Taro with Pork Floss。。Mushroom and Turnip。
。Choco with Cranberries and Macadamia。
。Black Rice with Sweet Potato Roll。
。Chesnut and Cream Cheese。


Taro Honey Roll

Many good reviews for this roll so The Big, aka the taro-addict, bought two rolls and was not disappointed. The texture of the dough is apparently different from the ones I bought in 1 Mantou. If 1 Mantou is dense but fluffy, this roll is definitely dense and chewy.

We especially love the honey aroma of the roll. The fruity honey aroma is even stringer after reheating. Some mashed taro was kneaded into the dough to complete the texture and pushing the flavour. The big pieces of taro were so satisfying with that natural sweetness.


Brown Sugar and Cheese Roll

Hmm, The Big said she doesn’t like this. We expected the brown sugar to be more aromatic but it turns out to be not. The filling was cheddar cheese which was too salty to pair with the brown sugar dough.


Mashed Taro with Pork Floss

This is a bit disappointing too. The dough is a bit too thin that sacrificed the beautiful chewy texture of the old dough. The mashed potato is too dense and losing its silky texture so we don’t really recommend this flavour.

Mushroom and Turnip

This flavour is not recommended either. The pepper powder was too overwhelming that you could barely taste other flavours. The fillings were made of mushroom, minced pork and turnip. You can taste the mushroom aroma but the pork was tasteless and dry. The turnip was marinated. In other words, it has a bolder flavour. Overall, the fillings were too heavy.


Choco with Cranberries and Macadamia

The dough was thicker than the brown sugar bun and pork floss bun and thus the unique texture brought by the old dough was more significant. The bun was added with cocoa powder with a bold flavour. We like the full-bodied flavour of this bun with dried cranberries and Macadamia in the bun. Mainiang also sprinkled some chocolate chips in the roll. They melted after reheating and the molten chocolate was rich and creamy.


Black Rice with Sweet Potato Roll

The dough was kneaded in with black rice crumbles therefore giving an extraordinary texture compared with other buns. The dough is more rough and the chewy texture was slightly less obvious. The sweet potato did not artificially sweetened. We both love the silky texture of the sweet potato. We especially love the walnut added between the dough and the sweet potato. The texture was rich and the nutty aroma balanced the sweetness of the bun.


Chesnut and Cream Cheese

Here comes a special flavour – chestnut with cream cheese. Chestnuts were mashed and mixed into cream cheese. We enjoyed the subtle sweetness. While some of the chestnuts were not diced and rolled into the bun to keep an ideal amount of firm texture with a good chew.


After all, the old dough buns from Mainiang is a completely new experience to us and it was a lovely try. But, some of the flavours did not hit our hearts. We summarised some preferred flavours below:

  • Highly recommended
    • Honey and Taro Roll
    • Black Rice with Sweet Potato Roll
  • Taste good but repurchase is not a must
    • Chocolate with Cranberries and Macadamia
    • Chesnut and Cream Cheese
  • Not recommended
    • Mashed Taro with Pork Floss
    • Brown Sugar and Cheese Roll
    • Mushroom with Turnip


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