This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "Curry puff" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (January 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

Curry puff
Curry puff from Malaysia
Alternative namesKaripap, epok-epok, Pastel
CourseEntrée, side dish, snack
Associated cuisineBrunei, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore and Thailand[1][2]
Serving temperatureHot
Main ingredientsCurry, chicken, potatoes

A curry puff (Malay: Karipap, Epok-epok; Chinese: 咖哩角,咖哩餃; pinyin: gālí jiǎo; Thai: กะหรี่ปั๊บ, RTGSkaripap, pronounced [kā.rìː.páp]) is a snack of Southeast Asian origin.[1] It is a small pie consisting of curry with chicken and potatoes in a deep-fried or baked[3] pastry shell. The consistency of the curry is quite thick to prevent it from oozing out of the snack. Pap or puff reflects the Fujian Chinese dialect ('pop'), which means 'bubble, blister, puffed'. It is a truly Southeast Asian snack as it has Indian, Chinese or Malay elements.

Although the origins of this snack are uncertain, the snack is believed to have originated in Maritime Southeast Asia due in part to the various influences of the British Cornish pasty, the Portuguese empanada[4] and the Indian samosa during the colonial era. The curry puff is one of several "puff" type pastries with different fillings, though now it is by far the most common.[5] Other common varieties include eggs, sardines, root vegetables and onions, or sweet fillings such as yam.

Various kinds of curry puff are enjoyed throughout Southeast Asia and India.


Main article: Kue pastel

Indonesian pastel with vegetables and beef inside

In Indonesia, a curry puff is known as a pastel, although pastels do not necessarily contain any curry powder.


In Malaysia, curry puffs are commonly known as karipap and sold freshly fried at many Malay, Chinese and Indian puff. The curry puffs from Indian bakeries differ from epok-epok in the use of layered pastry that creates a flaky crust. Other varieties of the epok-epok are filled with half a boiled egg instead of chicken. Another alternative is tinned sardines. There are also vegetarian curry puffs that are not spicy and made from shredded radish, tofu, potatoes and grated carrots. They are often eaten with sweet chili sauce.


Indian vegetable puff with tomato ketchup

In Indian food bakeries it is quite common to find vegetarian curry puffs with vegetables like potatoes, carrots and onions as fillings.[6] Egg puffs and chicken puffs are also other variants available in Indian bakeries.

Myanmar (Burma)

The curry puff is a common snack sold in Chinatowns and tea shops throughout Myanmar, where is it known as be tha mont (ဘဲသားမုန့်; lit.'duck meat pastry'). The traditional filling is duck meat and potato spiced with garam masala, onions, powdered chili peppers, garlic, and ginger.[7]


Curry puffs are commonly seen in pasar malams, bakeries and food stalls in shopping centres. Additionally, the aforementioned epok-epok is a popular variation in some of Singapore's hawker centres, usually amongst Malay stalls. Alternatively, the more common type of curry puff has a thick or flaky English-style crust, with a mixture of Chinese and Indian styles in the filling.

They may also be categorised into hand-made or mass-produced machine-made puffs in triangular shape or half wrapped circular shape. Both variations are popular in Singapore, although some might argue that the former is typically more delicious. Curry puff variations are usually denoted in coloured dye markings on the side of the puffs.[8]

Other puff snacks modelled on the curry puff concept have also been introduced, for example puffs with yam, durian, corn, red bean, nata de coco, grass jelly, bird's nest and even custard fillings.

Besides the more "exotic" fillings mentioned, there are also more conventional flavours which are quite popular with the locals. These puffs are readily available in Singapore, which include sardine, black-pepper chicken and tuna fillings.

In Singapore, Old Chang Kee has been selling curry puffs for over 60 years and now has outlets all over Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia and UK.


Thai karipap normally only contains chicken, potato, onion, and curry powder

In Thailand, a curry puff is known as a karipap (กะหรี่ปั๊บ). Assumed to have been adapted from the Portuguese pastel, it arrived in Thailand during the Ayutthaya period in the reign of King Narai (1633–1688) from Portuguese-Japanese-Bengali cook Maria Guyomar de Pinha, along with many Thai desserts such as thong yip, thong yot, foi thong and luk chup. Notable areas where karipap is popular are Amphoe Muak Lek, and Saraburi province in central Thailand,[9][10] where durian filling is used.[11]


See also


  1. ^ a b "Curry puff | Infopedia".
  2. ^ Tan, Bonny (September 2014). "Of currypuffs and belacan". BiblioAsia – via
  3. ^ "Curry Puff recipe on". Archived from the original on 10 May 2012. Retrieved 20 August 2009.
  4. ^ "Curry puffs: how Portuguese empadas took Southeast Asia by storm". South China Morning Post. 12 January 2021.
  5. ^ "How Southeast Asia fell for Old Chang Kee's fried curry puffs". South China Morning Post. 12 March 2020.
  6. ^ "This Quick, Delicious Veg Matar Puff is the Ultimate Snack to Have with Tea".
  7. ^ "ကြက်သား (သို့) ဘဲသားမုန့် (Chicken or Duck Puff) (Chicken or Duck Puff)". MyFood Myanmar (in Burmese). Retrieved 22 May 2018.
  8. ^ "Old Chang Kee educates people about significance of dots on curry puffs". AsiaOne. 4 November 2020.
  9. ^ บุนนาค, โรม (5 October 2015). "สูตรลับคอนแวนต์!! ที่มาของ ฝอยทอง ทองหยิบ...ทองหยอดมีหาง?". ASTV Manager (in Thai).
  10. ^ พานเงิน, ยุพิน (21 December 2013). "เมือง เนื้อนุ่ม นมดี กะหรี่ดัง". saraburinaja.blogspot (in Thai).
  11. ^ "ของฝากขึ้นชื่อ จ.สระบุรี กะหรี่ปั๊บไส้ทุเรียนหมอนทอง". Channel 3 (in Thai). 10 August 2017.