Apr 16, 2017

Kare Pan | Japanese Curry Buns

These Kare Pan, or Curry Buns, consist of Japanese curry wrapped in yeasted bread dough, coated with panko, and then deep fried. 

These Kare Pan, or Curry Buns, consist of Japanese curry wrapped in yeasted bread dough, coated with panko, and then deep fried.

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.

These Kare Pan, or Curry Buns, consist of Japanese curry wrapped in yeasted bread dough, coated with panko, and then deep fried.

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.

These Kare Pan, or Curry Buns, consist of Japanese curry wrapped in yeasted bread dough, coated with panko, and then deep fried.

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

Kare Pan | Japanese Curry Buns Recipe

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  1. 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.
  2. Place the dough into an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled, 60 to 90 minutes.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
Yield: 10 to 12 buns




Please visit all of the Bread Baking Babes and check out their versions of this month’s recipe:
These Kare Pan, or Curry Buns, consist of Japanese curry wrapped in yeasted bread dough, coated with panko, and then deep fried.



17 comments:

  1. oh... WOW!

    these are the type of goodies I would have a tough time with portion control... start with two, because I like even numbers, then two more, because the first two were awesome, and pretty soon you would regret inviting me over ;-)

    what a fantastic recipe, Karen... never heard of these babies, but I am in love with them already

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    1. Thanks so much Sally! I started with a half, just for the photo, and then ate the other half, just to "neaten up." Then I had another half, just to see if I could get a better shot of the middle of the bun... and you know where it went from there!

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    2. I think it is clear you sacrificed yourself for the good of the perfect shot.

      Your bravery is not lost on me.

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  2. I've seen boxes of some curry mixes in IndiaTown but never even thought to look at the all-Asian grocery store here to see about Japanese curry. You are brilliant.

    How perfectly formed your Kare Pan are too. (Now I think we made ours too large! I think Golf ball size would have been better than the baseball size I formed.) Nicely done!

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    1. Ha ha Elizabeth. I live in an area where there are so many available international markets. I'm pretty fortunate. Baseballs might be "just" a bit too large =)

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  3. Your Kare Pan look gorgeous! So good you could try the Japanese curry for a more authentic bread.
    I'm really happy you liked them so much.

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    1. I've always been intrigued by the boxes of curry cubes, and had no idea!

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  4. I love the uniform shape on your buns! ;) Beautiful golden color too. Mine kept being lopsided on one side because they puffed and split. Either I didn't let them sit long enough or I let them sit too long. I'm thinking too short.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Kelly! I set them on the counter, seam side down, and I think that helped.

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  5. That looks so good, I really love these balls, they look exactly like Dutch "Bitterballen" a snack they eat with a drink in café's... but what's in it differs of course.

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    1. They were so interesting weren't they? Thanks!

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  6. They look like a perfect addition to a picnic lunch, eaten out of hand. Now I'm hungry....

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  7. Your Japanese Curry Buns look beautiful! I went with a mild vegetable curry. I'm a wimp when it comes to heat!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Cathy. Even though it says hot, it was pretty mild!

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