Monday, 31 October 2011

Spiral Curry Puffs - Take 2



I'm calling this post Spiral Curry Puffs - Take 2 simply because Take 1 didn't happen! You cannot believe how much work goes into this dough until you try it and of course, the dough from Take 1 ended-up in the dustbin because I'd not rolled it right, cut it too small, was a complete mess-of-a-failure and couldn't even be used as curry puff dough or anything else for that matter!

Yes, lots of exclamation marks in the above paragraph. I felt like an exclamation mark myself just after I had to dump the dough after slaving over it for two hours. Two hours! Two hours of when I could have been mixing up a batch of shortbread from one of Alice Medrich's recipes. Aaaaaaarrrrgghhh...

Right then, now that that is out of the way let's get down to the curry puff story.

The curry puff story began when Girl started buying curry puffs for the Toad on days when she could and thought he hadn't had his lunch. The first curry puffs came from a stall at BB round the corner from Triple Round. In fact, Girl still buys Toad curry puffs from there to this day. The Toad liked his 'samosas' as he called them before bring told that they were curry puffs la.

One day, while Girl was out for lunch at a BB kopitiam, Chinese Uncle came along with a yellow tray full of goodies and pastries. There were curry puffs in the tray and Girl bought them for Toad whom she knew was coming to BB later in the day. That was the end of it.

See... Toad had developed an addiction for curry puffs by then, and when he had the yellow tray curry puffs, the world of curry puffs as he knew it changed. Sigh. Girl had forgotten that there are curry puffs and there are CURRY PUFFS. The yellow tray ones were CURRY PUFFS and took Toad's addiction to a whole new level of CRAVING. Curry puffs were not enough anymore. He wanted CURRY PUFFS!

Of course Chinese Uncle with the yellow tray hasn't been found again during lunch at BB. So how? Poor Girl decided to attempt Spiral Curry Puffs. Though as of today, she's ashamed to say it's not quite CURRY PUFF yet. On the other hand, she's quite pleased with herself for actually making it and having it turn out (somewhat) despite having trouble rolling the pastry, overfilling it with potatoes and making a mess of this  crimping-the-edges business.

Girl will be taking the curry puffs in the photo above into work with her for Toad in hope of helping him satisfy a CRAVING even if it is in a small way.

Meanwhile, Girl hasn't told him about the fabulous crispy curry puff stall in the Food Hall basement of Takashimaya in Singapore or even Old Chang Kee. (grin) Perhaps he could be persuaded to take a holiday down south soon!

Some things to remember/do before attempting to make the pastry:
  • The pliability of both the water and oil dough must be similar. Chill both doughs a while if need be.
  • Do not let the oil dough leak out of the water dough during the rolling stages. Roll gently but firmly using a small rolling pin for better control.
  • Learn and practise crimping the edges of the puffs.
  • Cook the filling first and let it cool while you make the pastry.
  • It is better to use vegetable shortening/Crisco/ghee/clarified butter/cooking oil instead of butter in this type of pastry.
Take 2 pastry recipe came from this website - Do What I Like - while the rolling directions came from this website - Corner Cafe. Please go to these websites for detailed instructions on wrapping and rolling the dough. The photos and step-by-step instructions are excellent.

Spiral Curry Puffs - Flaky Pastry
Adapted from Do What I Like

Water Dough
210 g plain flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
15g Crisco
1 egg, lightly beaten
95ml warm water

Oil Dough
100g - 160g plain flour
60g Crisco
  1. Make the filling. Set aside to cool. (recipe in a separate post)
  2. Water Dough - Rub shortening into the flour and salt until breadcrumbs form. Make a well in the middle and mix in the egg and water bit by bit. Once the dough leaves the sides of the bowl cleanly, knead lightly until it forms a smooth, pliable ball.
  3. Oil Dough - Rub shortening into the flour until coarse breadcrumbs form. With your fingers, bring the dough together to form a soft ball. Knead lightly until the dough leaves the sides of the bowl cleanly adding pinches of flour if necessary to bring the pliability of the dough to be similar with that of the Water Dough.
  4. Place both balls of dough in fridge for about 15 - 20 minutes in a bowl covered with clingfilm.
  5. Remove dough from fridge and divide both types of dough into two equal parts.
  6. Roll out one half of the Water Dough into a circle. Place a ball of Oil Dough in the middle. Wrap the Oil Dough and seal the edges.
  7. Do the same for the remaining pieces of dough.
  8. Follow the instructions in Corner Cafe or Do What I Like for wrapping, rolling and shaping the dough.
  9. Place filling in the centre of the rolled circle of dough. Do not overfill.
  10. Fold over the pastry carefully and crimp the edges shut.
  11. Continue until the pastry and hopefully all the filling is finished.
  12. Heat enough oil in a wok for deep-frying.
  13. Deep-fry the curry puffs two at a time until done and drain on kitchen towels.
  14. Place on a clean plate and serve immediately.