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Classic Curry Puff

I was happy to get feedback from a couple of friends that they used up their left-over chicken curry to make curry puffs after having seen last week’s post. Even if you only have leftover potatoes from your Sunday roast, you can totally make these curry puffs with some additional pantry staples like flour, butter, a can of sardines (or tuna), an onion, frozen peas and some curry powder.

We’ve been eating - and feeding our friends and neighbours - a lot of curry puffs lately, as I’ve been testing out the dough recipe (I haven't had any complaints). Like I promised in my last post, this curry puff recipe is not the lazy store-bought version (no one’s judging by the way) but the authentic home-made one. It’s not totally unlike shortcrust pastry but its fat content is divided between cooking oil and butter rather than just butter like in shortcrust pastry.

The classic curry puff is deep fried in large heavy woks, especially those sold by street vendors. I’m no specialist at deep frying and always prefer not to if possible. This recipe can be either deep fried or baked. I tried both and honestly, both are scrumptious but the deep-fried one stayed crispy even the day after. If you decide to bake them, do give them an egg wash before popping them in the oven to lend it a more golden colour and shine. Can you tell which is which?

Last week’s post has some meat filling recipes. This sardine and potato version is simple and just as good. I went with the extras: peas and hard-boiled eggs.

The crimping is really easy once you get the hang of it but you can also use a fork if you find it too fiddly. What’s nice about the crimped edge is that you have more crisp to enjoy!

Classic Curry Puffs

Use whatever filling you prefer. Last week's post has two recipes (chicken or beef). Make the curry puffs as large or small as you like. You may easily double the ingredients.


Makes about 12 to 15 curry puffs

Prep Time 10 to 15 mins/Rest Time 60 mins/Total Time 75 mins

  • 250 gms all purpose flour

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 50 ml cooking oil

  • 30 gms butter

  • 60 ml ice cold water

  • Oil for deep frying

  • 1 egg for baked version


  1. Mix flour and salt in heat-proof mixing bowl.

  2. Heat oil, add butter to melt and then pour over the flour and salt mixture.

  3. Mix with a wooden spoon until the mix resembles rough breadcrumbs.

  4. Gradually add in ice cold water, mix with fingers, then knead into a ball.

  5. Cover and allow to rest for one hour.

  6. Separate dough into little balls (about 25 gms each). Keep them covered while you work on each piece.

  7. Roll out pastry into an oblong rather than round shape.

  8. Hold the rolled out pastry in a cupped hand or place onto a working top, fill it generously.

  9. Fold the top and bottom ends together. Gently press the edges, giving it a generous border.

  10. Start crimping by folding in the border by a two-pinch movement: the first pinch is to fold, the second pinch is to thin out and flatten the border for the next fold.

  11. To fry: Deep fry curry puffs in hot oil until golden brown.

  12. To bake: Preheat oven to 190°C. Beat 1 egg with 1 tbsp of water, brush over curry puffs. Bake 25 minutes until golden brown.

Sardine and Potato Filling


Makes about 12 to 15 curry puffs

Prep Time 10 mins/Cook Time 30 mins/Total Time 40 mins

  • 1 tbsp cooking oil

  • 1 onion, peeled and diced

  • 15 gms curry powder

  • 250 potatoes, peeled and diced

  • 115 gm can of sardines in tomato sauce (or tuna in water, drained), mashed with a fork

  • Salt to taste

  • Optional: 1/4 tsp black mustard seeds, 1/4 cup frozen peas, sliced hard-boiled eggs


  1. Heat oil in a pan. Stir fry onion until translucent.

  2. Add mustard seeds if using. When they start to pop, add curry powder, mix well and stir fry till fragrant.

  3. Throw in the diced potatoes, mix well, add water to cover the potatoes. Allow to cook till tender.

  4. Add the sardines or tuna (and peas if using), stir through and cook another two minutes.

  5. Add salt and pepper to season. Allow to cool before using.


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