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Malaysian spiral curry puffs

Updated: Aug 21, 2022

This recipe is adapted from Marvellina's spiral curry puff recipe on What To Cook Today, one of my all-time favourite food blogs. Her recipes are so thoughtful and well tested, and always turn out.

The spiral pattern on these puffs are achieved by basically laminating a water-based dough with an oil-based dough. Unlike viennoiseries doughs that are laminated with butter by folding the dough around the butter, and the folding the dough onto itself, this lamination is achieved by rolling the dough up like a jelly roll cake, flattening it out, and rolling it like a jelly roll cake again. Head over to Marvellina's original blog post for photos, if you're a visual learner!

The gluten in the dough does tense up, so I usually like to start the dough in the morning, and let the dough relax for an hour or two after each shaping, to make it easier on myself. It's a very relaxed and slow process that I fit into my day, and you end up with delicious curry puffs by the end of it. My sample timeline usually looks like this (but you don't have to let the dough rest this long in-between stages)

Day 1: at some point, make the curry and let it cool overnight in the fridge

Day 2:

  • 11am, make the water dough and oil dough

  • 12pm, enclose the oil dough in the water dough, rest

  • 2pm, roll into a rectangle and roll up into a log, rest

  • 4pm, roll into a rectangle and roll back up into a log, rest

  • 5pm, slice the log into equal portions and form the puffs

  • fry the puffs, and burn your mouth/fingers eating them right away because you're too impatient to let them cool down

I realize that not everybody wants to draw the rest periods over 2 hours. The recipe below indicates 1 hour of rest in-between the stages. You can definitely do shorter (and just be aware of the gluten requiring more work to roll out), or longer (if your schedule is more easy going and you have no deadlines).

I suggest letting the curry puffs cool on a wire rack first before eating one. But if you're impatient like me, you'll eat it right away, burn the roof of your mouth, and still want to repeat that delicious mistake with the next batch that comes out of the oil.


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