Saturday, July 28, 2012

Cheater Curry Puffs

Weekends are funny things.  Until I moved to Abu Dhabi, back in 1987, to me weekends were undeniably Saturday and Sunday.  And Friday night was a great night to go out because you had two days of lounging around recovering before school or work began again on Monday.  I was surprised to learn that weekends were Thursday afternoon and all day Friday in the United Arab Emirates.  It’s not like I had led a sheltered life, and I had even lived in a Muslim majority nation before (Indonesia) but it had just never occurred to me that weekends might mean other days of the week to someone else around the world.   Years later, when I moved to Malaysia, I discovered that there many people also worked five and a half days a week, but their weekend was Saturday afternoon and Sunday.  Even my cleaning lady came in on Saturday mornings.  And she would bring me fried potato curry puffs.  With their tender flakey crust and spicy potato filling, boy, howdy, they were tasty!

After making and eating potato curry the other evening, the thought suddenly jumped into my head that what I had were not leftovers, but curry puff filling!  Rather than making pastry and frying them, I decided to use puff pastry squares and make them into little pillows of curry puff to bake.  This is hardly a recipe since it’s almost all method but here’s how I did it.   

Leftover curry – you could use beef or chicken but potato is my favorite for curry puffs
Small puff pastry squares - about 4 in or 10cm – one for every two to three tablespoons of leftover curry

Take your puff pastry squares out of the freezer and allow them time to thaw.  Preheat your oven to 400°F or 200°C.   Line a cookie tray with parchment paper. 

Cut the potatoes in your leftover curry into much smaller pieces.  This will make it easier to wrap the puff pastry around the filling.  (If you are using a meat curry, do the same to all the chunks in your curry.)

Dampen your countertop and stick a piece of cling film down.

Place one square of puff pastry on the cling film and, using a rolling pin, gently enlarge it by at least an inch or 2cm.

Place your filling in the center of the puff pastry.  

Fold the far corner over, creating a triangle.  Press the sides of the pastry together around the filling, making sure to get all the air out. 

Using a pastry brush, dampen the pastry with water.  Fold the two sides in, then fold the bottom up. 

Pinch the corners to help make sure you have good seals.  I also just like the way that looks.

Place the finished curry puffs on a plate, which has been covered with cling film.  (The cling film helps them not stick to the plate.)  Cover the curry puffs with a dampened towel or paper towels until they are all done or until you are ready to bake them.

Place the curry puffs on your prepared cookie sheet.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the pastry is golden and puffy. 

Don't worry if they aren't so pretty now.  It won't matter when they have baked!

Serve with fresh raita, if desired.  I make mine like this.  I added chopped tomatoes this time too though.  I took these as an appetizer to a dinner party so I didn't get a photo of the curry puffs on a small plate.  Imagine one puff, with a spoon or two of raita on the side.  Pretty and delicious. 

By the way, here in Egypt, folks work a five-day week but their weekend is Friday and Saturday.  Who knew?  What days are your weekend?



  1. Curry puffs are one of my favorite foods and I love this shortcut version. It's funny what unexpected adjustments one makes living in another country - After two years I'm barely used to the Israeli weekend of Friday and Saturday (many people there also work 5 1/2 days - Sunday through Friday afternoon). So happy to have found you and your blog through the food bloggers network fb group :-)

  2. Ah, I was wondering if Israel followed the Arab countries with Friday and Saturday or took Saturday and Sunday since either would give them the Sabbath off. I struggle the most with Sunday being the first day of the week. For the first couple of months, it really threw my week off, like when Monday is a holiday back home. But I am adjusting! Happy to have found you too and your blog hop. My first time to join one, so thanks!

  3. I stumbled upon your blog through a friend. I was surprised to learn you lived in Indonesia before :) I am an Indonesian, live in the US with an Irish hubby. I am always looking for easy recipe and finding yours is a blessing. Thanks so much.

  4. I am so glad you found me, Lita! When I was in college, my father lived in Jakarta so I got to visit during holidays, but my husband and I lived in Balikpapan for a couple of years in the early years of our marriage. We love Indonesia and Indonesians are some of the sweetest people I have ever met. I hope you are enjoying your time in the States. Please come back and visit here anytime!

  5. I can't wait to make these. We just came back from Penang, and I think I ate my body weight in curry puffs because you can't get them in Chicago. So excited to try this, thanks for the share!


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