The quintessential bun in any Chinese bakery, the pineapple bun is synonymous with being the ultimate comfort food in Chinese cultures. Interestingly enough, with no pineapple actually in the ingredients, the pineapple bun derived its name from its recognizable cracked top resembling the skin of a pineapple.
Known as a “BoLo Bao” in Cantonese, we visit the popular Kam Do Bakery in Richmond. We hear from owners who started Kam Do as a Restaurant and Bakery combo in 1995. Derek remembers when they operated as a “Cha Chang Teng” or Hong Kong Style Cafe, ordering steak and fries on a sizzle plate, with his favorite black pepper gravy. The owners share their experiences and memories in operating the restaurant and bakery in Richmond for the last 25+ years. Lastly, everyone snacks on Kam Do’s other signature baked good, the “Wife Cake”.
In finding similar iterations of the pineapple bun, we travel to Baker and Table cafe on Vancouver’s Fraser St to try the Japanese Melonpan bun. With a similar cracked top, much like the pineapple bun, the melonpan pun contains no melon in it’s recipe! Owner Hitomi shares a heartfelt story about how she started the bakery.
For our last stop, Osric and Derek visit the Metate Bake Shop and try their signature Mexican Concha Buns. Just like the pineapple and melonpan buns, the concha has a similar cracked shell on top of the bun. Literally in the shape of a shell, hence “concha”!
Metate Bake Shop ceased baking in December due to the pandemic and are waiting until events and farmer's market begin again.
The owners share their experience of running a food business during the pandemic and how their baked goods were a source of connection for the surrounding Latin community and beyond.