These Kare Pan, or Curry Buns are filled with a Japanese curry beef stew. Evidently, kare pan is a popular snack food in Japan, and is sold in bakeries and convenience stores.
This month, the Bread Baking Babes are heading to Japan.
For these buns, I made a curry dish with steak, but you can definitely use any other meat, such as lamb, pork, or chicken. You could also use a vegetarian curry for these buns. The main thing? Be sure your curry is thick and not too liquid-y.
Japanese curry is made with a roux of curry powder, chili powder, flour, and oil or butter, which is added to a stew of meat, carrots, onions, and potatoes. The curry is served with rice or noodles. Home cooks usually use instant curry roux, which is sold in blocks. I was able to find it in the international foods section of my grocery store. Vermont? I think it got its name because there is apple and honey in it.
You don't have to make Japanese curry to enjoy these buns. Any curry will do.
These buns are completely delicious right after they are made. If you have leftovers, you can refrigerate them and then reheat them for about 15 minutes in the oven, preferably with convection.
Kare pan can be shaped into rounds, as I have done, or like hand pies. These are a little bigger than golf balls, and the dough puffs up in the fryer. I fried mine, two at a time, in this mini deep fryer, but they can also be fried, three at a time in a wok or sauce pan.
The panko coating is crispy and crunchy, and not greasy at all. Sooooo good!
Thank you to Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen, for introducing the Bread Baking Babes to this delicious bread!
Kare Pan | Japanese Curry Buns Recipe
- For the dough: 1 tsp instant yeast
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 1/4 cups (160 grams) all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (60 grams) whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup (55 grams) cake flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons oil or melted butter
- 3/4 cups water (180 grams)
- Filling: About 1 to 1 1/2 cups of leftover curry stew of your choice
- Coating and frying: 1 egg and 1 tsp of water
- 3/4 cup panko crumbs
- Enough oil for frying
- For the dough: Whisk the yeast, sugar, flours, and salt together in a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup of the all purpose flour for adjusting the flour later. Add the 1 1/2 tablespoons of oil and the water, and mix with your hands, in a mixer, or in a food processor, adding more water or flour as needed, until you have a smooth dough.
- Place the dough into an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled, 60 to 90 minutes.
- Divide the dough into 10 to 12 equal pieces and shape each into a ball. Place on a plate or on your counter, cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 30 to 45 minutes.
- For the filling: Drain any excess liquid from the stew you have set aside. Cut the meat into smaller pieces, and roughly mash the vegetables. Stir the meat back into the vegetables.
- To prepare the buns: Flatten each piece of dough into a disk, about 1/4 inch thick. Place a heaping teaspoon of curry in the middle of the dough circle, bring the seams together, seal, and fold up into a ball.
- Whisk the egg and the water in a bowl, and place the panko in another bowl. Dip each ball in the egg wash, and then coat with the panko, lightly pressing the crumbs into the dough with your hands. Let them rest for about 15 minutes, covered, while you heat the oil.
- In a fryer, wok, or pan, heat the oil to 365 degrees F. Fry the buns, two to three at a time, turning them as they cook, so that they brown evenly. They are ready in 2 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove them to a paper towel lined plate. Serve immediately.
Please visit all of the Bread Baking Babes and check out their versions of this month’s recipe:
- Blog from OUR Kitchen – Elizabeth
- A Messy Kitchen – Kelly
- Judy’s Gross Eats – Judy
- Karen’s Kitchen Stories – Karen
- Notitie Van Lien – Lien
- My Diverse Kitchen - Aparna
- Bread Experience - Cathy
- Thyme for Cooking - Katie