Who doesn't love curry puffs? For me they are a childhood treat that I have always adored. And like most kids you think your mum's are the best but I haven't found one that betters it.
My mother's mix of beef, onion and potato seasoned with curry is delightfully simple (and without a cast of a thousand ingredients). The filling is enclosed in a puff pastry (cut with a rice bowl no less) and then deep fried. I dare anyone to stop at one.
We're slowly but surely making our way through my mother's recipe book. It's a book where she has hand written out all of her recipes. It is covered with white and red polka dot contact paper and as soon as we hit the curry puff page, I knew that was the next recipe to share. So one rainy Spring day we made curry puffs pleating each while the rain stole the sunshine away.
My mother has fallen in love with the little dog we are looking after. It's rather easy, the pup is so affectionate and trusting despite everything she has gone through, and she will happily crawl into your lap and rest her chin on your leg and snooze.
My mother very happily looks after her during the day whenever I have an appointment that I can't take her to. My dad however has taken no interest in the little dog until one day when Mr NQN told him, "Do you know that she is half Chinese?". My father is the most patriotic Chinese person I know. He has a Chinese accountant, chemist, mechanic, doctor and dentist and only eats Chinese food.
"Whaat?" he said curiously, but with a guarded enthusiasm. Yes it's true, she is half Shitzu half Maltese which does make her half Chinese. "So clever," my mother coos rubbing her ears and face. "Can she eat curry?" she asked me. Because I get the feeling that as kids we all started on curry and she can't wait to start her on it!
So tell me Dear Reader, did you eat curry as a child or how old were you when you first ate chilli? What was your favourite childhood treat?
My Mother's Curry Puffs
Makes around 35 curry puffs
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes + 10 minutes
- 570g/20ozs. minced beef (would have been 600g but we gave some to the dog :P)
- 2.5 cups potatoes, diced in small cubes
- 2.5 cups onion, diced finely
- 4 tablespoons curry powder* (or to taste)
- 1 cup water (approximately)
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 3 teaspoons sugar
- 6 sheets puff pastry, thawed
- Oil for deep frying
We use Baba's Meat Curry Powder, found at Asian grocery stores.
Step 1 - Fry the onion in oil until soft. Then add the beef and potatoes and then add the curry powder and 1/2 cup of the water. Simmer for 25 minutes or until potatoes are tender (but not mushy). Add water as necessary while it is simmering. Season with salt and sugar and allow to cool completely (if you're in a hurry spread it out on two large baking trays and pop in the freezer or fridge).
Step 2 - Take the puff pastry and cut out 8cm/3.2 inch circles. Fill with the cooled filling-about a teaspoon will do (do not overfill). Deep fry in oil for 2-3 minutes turning over. Drain on absorbent paper.