Curry Puff

Curry puffs are one of the many favourite ‘kuih’ in Southeast Asia. Also known as karipap, the crispy pastry is stuffed with a variety of savoury fillings such as potatoes, sardine or a combination of curry potatoes and minced meat.

4.4 stars

Preparation 30 mins
Cooking 60 mins

Snack

Karipap, Epok-epok, 咖哩角, 咖哩饺

Malaysian, Singaporean, Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Bruneian

Nyonya Cooking on Facebook
Nyonya Cooking on Pinterest
Nyonya Cooking on Twitter

Nutrition per Serving

176 kcal
19 g
10 g
3 g


Curry puff may look like another puff pastry or savoury pie but it is the unofficial king of kuih for many in Malaysia, Singapore and around the region. In these countries, curry puffs or epok-epok is a favourite during breakfast and teatime.

Freshly made, crispy and flaky deep-fried curry puffs are best eaten together with a glass of sweet tea 'Teh Tarik' when the filling is still warm.

Why should I make these curry puffs?

The crispy pastry is the reason to make these curry puffs. Many who have tasted it rave that it is one of the best they'd come across. You will notice the flakiness of the pastry and the delightful flavour as you savour every bite.

The fragrance of the filling makes the curry puff even more delectable.

Following this recipe accordingly will ensure the crispiness of the pastry is maintained throughout the day. You can prepare them in advance and will be surprised at how the pastry still remains crispy.

Why is the dough crumbly?

The pastry is the key point of a curry puff. We've taken the recipe back to the kitchen in April 2020 after reading comments from the community regarding the problems with crumbly dough.

The steps have now been updated with specific instructions. There are several important tips to be taken into consideration.

  1.  The hot oil needs to be smoking hot. Once poured into the flour mixture, immediately use a spoon to mix it thoroughly.

  2.  Use cold water to add to the oily dough. Not room temperature water but cold water from the refrigerator.

  3. Knead evenly!

  4.  The dough will still be soft due to the hot oil. Let it cool in the refrigerator. There will be excess oil from the dough when it is removed from the refrigerator. Just knead it again before dividing into 10 or 12 balls.

Here's a video to see the dough making process in detail which uses only flour, oil and water:

How many curry puffs will this recipe yield?

It depends on the size of the curry puffs. To make 12 curry puffs, divide dough into balls of 35g each. Larger curry puffs need 40g of dough. That will yield 10 curry puffs then.

Potato filling

The potatoes need to be cooked until they are really soft and no liquid remains. Besides, be careful not to mash them as you stir. Here's a comparison of the 'before and after' cooking of the potatoes. As you can see, the amount is just nice for 10 to 12 curry puffs.

Frying curry puffs

When frying, do not use high heat or the edge of the curry puff will brown quickly. This will create an uneven pastry skin. Use low to medium heat instead. Also, do not allow one side to be fully browned before turning it over.

Continuously flip them during the frying process. This is to achieve a beautiful shade of golden brown and ensuring that the curry puffs are fried evenly.

Frozen curry puffs

After shaping the curry puffs, freeze them for at least four hours. Then, store the uncooked curry puffs in an airtight container or plastic bag in the freezer for later consumption. The frozen curry puffs do not need to be defrosted before frying or baking.

Baked curry puffs

Instead of frying the curry puffs, they can also be baked. This method is very helpful to those who are health conscious. Baked curry puffs are just as tasty and in fact, it is highly suggested as it is not as oily.

The sides may brown faster than the rest of the surface of the curry puff but it's ok. They taste just as delicious as the fried version, as seen here.

Baked curry puff
Baked curry puff

To bake the curry puffs, preheat oven at 180 degrees Celsius. Place them on a piece of baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes or until browned. Frozen curry puffs do not need to be thawed before baking.

Is curry leaves necessary?

Curry leaves are used to add a wonderful aroma to the curried potatoes. If you do not have curry leaves, substitute with one bay leaf or just omit them from the recipe.

Can meat be added to the filling?

Yes, of course. You may add diced chicken breasts if that is your preference. Just reduce the amount of diced potatoes if you do so.

Additionally, you may add a wedge of hard boiled egg which is sometimes done by some street vendors.


Ingredients

Servings:  
5 g
salt
220 g
wheat flour
120 ml
oil
370 ml
water
1⁄2 tbsp
oil
1 tbsp
yellow onion(s)
2
garlic clove(s)
5 g
shrimps (dried)
1
curry leaves stalk(s)
1 1⁄2 tsp
curry powder
320 g
potatoes

Steps to Prepare

Curry Puff Step 1

Step 1 of 5

    • 5 g salt
    • 220 g wheat flour
    • 120 ml oil
    • 70 ml water

In a bowl, mix salt and flour evenly. Set aside. Heat oil in a pan at high heat. Pour hot oil directly into the flour mixture. Mix well. Then add cold water and continue kneading until the dough comes together. Set dough aside in the refrigerator.

Curry Puff Step 2

Step 2 of 5

    • 1⁄2 tbsp oil
    • 1 tbsp yellow onion(s)
    • 2 garlic clove(s)
    • 5 g shrimps (dried)
    • 1 curry leaves stalk(s)
    • 1 1⁄2 tsp curry powder
    • 320 g potatoes
    • 300 ml water

Stir-fry onion slices and minced garlic with oil until fragrant. Add blended dried shrimps, curry leaves and curry powder. Then, add diced potatoes. Add enough water and simmer at low heat until the potatoes softened.

Curry Puff Step 3

Step 3 of 5

Divide the dough equally into balls of ~ 35gm each. They may be refrigerated to ensure the dough is more manageable. Flatten dough until it is about 0.2cm thick. Place filling in the middle of the flattened dough.

Curry Puff Step 4

Step 4 of 5

Fold sides together to create a semi-circle. Seal the sides by pinching the dough together. Using the pinch and fold technique as shown in the video, create the distinctive edge of curry puffs.

Curry Puff Step 5

Step 5 of 5

Fry curry puffs at low to medium heat until golden brown. For later consumption, freeze uncooked curry puffs. Before freezing, separate them with a piece of cling wrap to prevent them from sticking together.

Published: June 12, 2016


20 Discussions

Laureen
7 months ago

Laureen

First, I want to thank you for selflessly sharing your recipes. I've been whipping up curry puffs lately and I'm loving it! I have a question that keeps bugging my mind though. WHAT is the advantage of using boiling hot oil VS lukewarm oil when adding it into the dough? :)

Grace
4 months ago

Grace

Hello Laureen! Happy to hear this! Adding hot oil helps to "fry" the flour before it turns into a dough. Cold water adds a sudden change of temperature. The result is a softer but crispier curry puff skin. ;)

Karen K
7 months ago

Karen K

I tried the pastry twice. The first time i made it, it was very flaky which was nice (i like flaky pastry). I never thought i had to use so much oil in a pastry dough :-) when i made it the second time i used less oil and more flour, the pastry is less flaky but just as nice. I baked my curry puffs instead of frying them in oil as i thought it is healthier. Thank you for sharing this recipe. For those reviewers who were not successful, i would suggest adjust the amount to suit your preference. It certaily works for me :D

Grace
4 months ago

Grace

Hello Karen, thank you for your review and feedback. :D

Lavenyah
9 months ago

Lavenyah

am i supposed to add 320ml water to 220 gm flour;? y does the recipe say so? i followed the recipe and it is so watery.

Grace
9 months ago

Grace

In step 1, the recipe calls for only 70ml water to 220g flour.

Elizabeth
9 months ago

Elizabeth

Just tried this evening, did put the dough in fridge for half an hour but the dough is so soft a bit difficult to wrap, did I did it wrongly? Should I add a bit more flour? I air fried the curry puff and pastry is so crispy.

Grace
9 months ago

Grace

I didn't need to add any flour. If it's still too soft for you, go ahead and mix in a bit of flour.

Hoay
10 months ago

Hoay

I just tried this recipe by air frying it 350 F for 20 mins and it turns out great. Thanks for the recipe and detailed instructions

Dileep Sharma
10 months ago

Dileep Sharma

This recipe is almost correct, except for the inordinate quantity of oil being used in the pastry. I would recommend you use 50% of the oil recommended as the dough will be perfect and you will have no complaints from the unfortunate punters that are finding the mix impossible to work with. 😀

Josie
10 months ago

Josie

Hi! Is the flour White all-purpose or whole wheat? It says wheat in the ingredients, but the video is all-purpose

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
10 months ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

All purpose flour is also wheat flour. Not whole wheat though.

Josie
10 months ago

Josie

I’m in the US and only have access to individual curry leaves. How many leaves should I use? Idk how many are in a sprig. Is it like 10-15?

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
10 months ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Yes, that is about right :)

nat
a year ago

nat

Followed every step yet still failed (all four tips and videos) I have tried 2 attempts, both turned out too crumbly and breaks when I roll.

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
10 months ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Did you try adding more water?

Jackie Randa
4 months ago

Jackie Randa

I have tried this recipe twice very closely and I had the same results too. It was quite a frustrating ordeal and I am not a newbie to pastry or baking. The dough was soft so i stuck it in the freezer to hardened, filled it and then frozen it again and then fried it and the dough still fell apart when frying. How can I add more water to the dough when I have already rolled and filled it? You only realise it crumbles when you fry it. The entire curry puff, especially the edges disintegrates into the oil when frying. How does it make sense you and Grace give different advise to the similar issue people are encountering? I might as well do a short crust pastry for this curry puff and fry it instead.

Grace
4 months ago

Grace

Hello Jackie, I apologize for the experience. Let me break this down. When the dough is too crumbly during the rolling process, it shows that the dough is too dry. So Mira's advice as above will not be fitting in your situation. Because your dough is too soft. Nat mentioned that her dough is too crumbly when rolled. In your case, I suggest reducing the amount of water. We tried this recipe several times with different people. 70ml water worked best for us. Try it out with 50ml of water. Add enough water until it comes into a pliable dough (remember to knead well - tip no 3!). The dough should not stick to the surface once done. You can see the final result of the dough in this video: https://bit.ly/2xtrAQY. Shaped and filled curry puffs can be refrigerated instead of freezing. If do plan to give the dough another try, I hope these tips can help you out. P/S: I do monitor comments on the whole site very closely to avoid inconsistencies ;)

Lynn
a year ago

Lynn

Thanks so much for the recipe! finally i can have good baked curry puffs. I followed the recipe exactly, but added a rounded 1/4 tsp of salt to the filling. Added 1/6 of a hard boiled egg to each puff . Sprayed the puffs with some oil and increased oven temp to 190C for 10 min to get the golden color. Tastes great!

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Thank you for your feedback, Lynn! Care to upload a food snap too?

Lynn
a year ago

Lynn

Already done ☺️

vivacious_life@hotmail.com
a year ago

vivacious_life@hotmail.com

Will it still work if I used hot butter instead of hot oil

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

We haven't tried it. I think it could be too crumbly....

Bethan
a year ago

Bethan

Hello! I have just tried this recipe and seem to have failed at the pastry. It's turned out very crumbly - almost biscuit / shortbread like. I wonder if I used too much oil? Reason I ask is that I put the dough in the fridge to rest and chill and when I took it out the dough was still in a round ball but some of the oil had separated and was surrounding the dough (a bit like a little dough island with an oily sea!). I'm sure I followed the measurements correctly. Could I have chilled the dough for too long? I used sunflower oil - is there a specific oil I should use instead? I used approx. 70ml water but used what I felt was right to bring it all together - did I use too little maybe? Determined to get this right as they're one of my favourite things to eat and my Grandma used to make them so any help or tips would be hugely appreciated. Thank you

Grace
a year ago

Grace

I've had success with both sunflower oil and canola oil. So that shouldn't be the problem. How long did you refrigerate the dough? I usually keep it in the chiller for about 20 minutes or so because of the oil the very hot oil. As long as it is harder and pliable, then it‘s perfect for wrapping. 70ml worked just fine for me. Was the texture of the dough as shown in the 2-minute video above?

Bethan
a year ago

Bethan

Thanks Grace. I might have kept the dough in the fridge too long as decided to try and multitask with that time and do a bit of cleaning! So, it probably stayed in there for 1.5 hrs? Maybe that's the issue? Yes when I was kneading the dough it looked like as shown in the video, but when I went to roll it out admittedly it was more crumbly but also very oily. The taste of the dough wasn't quite right either and I wonder if my oil was too hot when added to flour and salt - once baked, it tasted a bit burnt. I'll try again and let you know how I get on!

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Hi Bethan, Did you knead the oil back into the dough? If you see the video at this point, you can see it's a smooth dough and gluten is beginning to form: https://youtu.be/lta8cvoTibY?t=96

Edmund Pearson
a year ago

Edmund Pearson

I freeze them after frying. Works well for me. It also means that I don't have to worry about hot oil when I serve them. I just reheat for 10 minutes in a 400F oven.

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Thank you for sharing, Edmund! That's a very helpful tip.

Angela
a year ago

Angela

I have to give a poor rating to this recipe. I followed religiously to every step and the amount of ingredients, but the dough is flaky.

Grace
a year ago

Grace

Hi Angela, I'm very sorry to know about this. May I know if you followed all four tips above? Did the additional video do any help? With more information, we can work to add more details to make this a better recipe.

Susanna
a year ago

Susanna

The filling was tasty but the dough was very hard to work with and kept breaking apart when being filled. During and after frying, the pastry was very dry and crumbly :( I specifically used very hot oil and water that was chilled overnight in the fridge. Any ideas on things I can try differently?

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

I think there wasn't enough water in the dough. Did you add 70 ml of water in step 1? If you look at the dough up close in this video, it should be very soft and playable: https://bit.ly/2xtrAQY Was it the same for you too?

Susanna
a year ago

Susanna

Hi Mira, thank you for your reply. I did add 70ml of cold water in step 1. I was afraid of over-kneading though, so I only kneaded until the ingredients were combined. Would you recommend kneading for a lot longer and is there a risk of over-kneading? Thanks for your help :)

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Over-kneading shouldn't happen because the dough is very soft once mixed with water. It will come together very quickly. Use a large spoon to mix the dough for 2-3 minutes, as we have shown in here https://bit.ly/2xtrAQY Good luck!!

Lynn
a year ago

Lynn

Tried to make this for 30 puffs on the first try. Somehow when I keyed in 30 in the servings field, the amount of water reflected 925ml of water. I don’t even think I used half the water before it became a similar consistency to what was shown in the video. It’s now sitting in the fridge (recipe didn’t mention when it should be taken out, so I’m assuming once it’s cooked). Guess will have to try to make one puff and see how it turns out.

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Are you refrigerating the dough at Step 3? They don't take long (ca. 30 mins). It's just to make the dough more manageable. 925ml is meant to be added in step 1 and step 2. The individual breakdown of ingredients is in the steps. Hence, you will need only 175 ml water for the dough when making 30 curry puffs.

Berlinda Gooi
a year ago

Berlinda Gooi

Followed the printed recipe....and poured too much water into the dough. Can you please update printed version to be specific - 70ml of water. Failed :(

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
a year ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

I'm so sorry! We will fix that. The ingredients listed in the print out is always the combined amount. We will add the breakdown of ingredients to the steps in the printout as well.

Matt
a year ago

Matt

We've redesigned the PDF. Hope it's more useful now!

Joan
2 years ago

Joan

After storing curry puffs in freezer overnight, do I need to defrost first before frying?

Grace
a year ago

Grace

Nope

Julie Nguyen
2 years ago

Julie Nguyen

This recipe is a disaster! Followed very thoroughly the steps, dough super crumbly, had to add tons of water. Then when fried, puffs just broke and shattered in pieces! Also wrong measurements, waaaay to much filling for not enough dough. I am not an amateur cook and this is not the first time I'm following a recipe and this one is really not meeting expectations. I'm so frustrated!

Julie Nguyen
2 years ago

Julie Nguyen

Wish I could add my pics to support my comment

Victoria
2 years ago

Victoria

I made it yesterday night and baked them this morning. The dough was not workable at all in the beginning and I reread the recipe and watch the video again. I suspected I didn’t knead long enough. So, I put my dough back in bread machine using kneading mode for 15 mins and adding maybe 40ml of water. When the dough don’t stick to the bottom of my bread machine pan, it’s done. Took a bit of troubleshooting

Mira - Community Happiness Manager
2 years ago

Mira - Community Happiness Manager

Sorry for taking a long time to reply, Julie. We took the recipe back to our kitchens and updated the steps and tips to help troubleshoot the recipe. The measurement for the fillings should be just nice for the recipe. You can refer to the new photos and video to help you. Let us know if you have other questions.

Jess
2 years ago

Jess

Hey, can I use pastry wheat flour for this?

Give us your opinion! Log in and start posting.