I’ve been slightly obsessed with puff pastry recently, getting excited with exploring new creative ways to use it and loving its versatility. So when I had to figure out what appetizer/dessert to make for a huge Christmas party I was attending, I definitely couldn’t miss the opportunity.
This was rather experimental, as I pretty much winged it, but I’m happy to say they turned out uhh-may-zing-lee. Here’s my recipe for beef curry bites! If you grew up going to the Chinese market and getting those puff-pastry things with the curry meat inside, you’re going to love these, since they’re kind of a mini or deconstructed version of those! **Please note, however, I don’t really measure when I cook my own recipes, so the measurements for the seasonings can vary!
Beef Curry Bites
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small onion, diced
1 lb of lean ground beef
About 4-5 tbsp of soy sauce
2 to 2 1/2 tbsp curry powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or to personal preference)
1/8-1/4 tsp dry basil
Salt & pepper to taste
About 1/2 cup of frozen peas
1 to 1 1/2 tbsp corn starch
1 large potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
1 box of puff pastry, thawed at room temp (usually comes with 2 large sheets)
OPTIONAL: 1 egg + 1 tbsp water (for egg wash)
YEILD: About 50 mini bites, or 25 big bites aka muffin-size
1. Heat up about 2 tbsp oil on medium heat in a large skillet or wok, and cook garlic & onions until onions are slightly soft or starting to brown.
2. Add in ground beef, and after it’s broken up and starting to brown, add soy sauce, curry powder, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, basil, salt and pepper. Add about 1 cup of water.
3. Cook until beef is cooked all the way through. In a separate bowl, combine corn starch with about 1-2 tbsp of water, mix well, and add to beef mixture (this will thicken the sauce). Add frozen peas, mix well, and cook for about 5 minutes.
4. In a separate pot (preferably at the same time you are cooking the beef), boil the cubed potatoes until just slightly soft. Then drain the water and saute in a separate skillet with some oil, a bit of salt and curry powder.
Potatoes usually take a while to cook, so boiling them for a bit saves some time, and then sauteing them to cook all the way through gives a good “sturdy” texture to them. Otherwise, you will end up with mushy and wet potatoes that make your curry mix mushy as well.
5. Add the potatoes into the curry beef mixture and mix well.
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Roll out a sheet of puff pastry, and with a pizza roller, cut into small 2 inch squares if you are using a mini cupcake tin, and about 4 in squares if you are using a regular muffin tin. Place squares in a greased muffin tin.
You don’t need to push them down all the way to get to the edges. Just so long as it makes for a good cup shape is fine.
3. OPTIONAL: Beat an egg and whisk with about 1 tsp of water. With a pastry brush (or your fingers I guess…), gently brush the 4 corners of each square with the egg wash. You don’t have to do this, but I like it because it helps the corners to brown a bit nicer.
4. Fill with curry beef filling. Don’t put too much or else it’ll stick to the sides of the pan, or fall out, but don’t be afraid to be generous with it either, as the filling will become more solid and stick together after baking in the oven.
5. Bake for 15 minutes or until puff pastry turns slightly golden brown.
The only thing was that the filling ended up slightly dry after being in the oven, so I made a super-random-on-the-fly curry sauce. Random recipe below:
Quick and easy curry sauce
2 tbsp of butter
3 tbsp soy sauce
1-1 1/2 cup(s) water
1 to 1 1/2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
dashes of cumin, basil, cinnamon and cayenne pepper
Salt & pepper to taste
2 tbsp corn starch + 2 tbsp water
1. In small pot or sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add soy sauce and water.
2. Add rest of seasonings, mix well.
3. Mix corn starch w/ water separately, and add to curry sauce. Mix well and let sauce thicken. Drizzle over curry-beef bites!
Since these turned out so well, I think next time I might just full out make the puff pastry curry pie things…for myself.