Kap Kap Karipap

Our school sports day would not be complete without the Karipap Man. When we were knee high to a grasshopper the Karipap Man used to tower over us. He’s a dark Tamil man with his trusty black big bicycle and huge rattan basket filled to the brim to hot triangular Karipap.

Ah Neh’s speciality is in his pickled pink onions. When he serves his Karipap, he would place a huge Karipap on a piece of newsprint. Take his fork and jab the Karipap making an opening and then stuff those sweet pickled pink onions inside.

Most of the time the Karipap was a little soft and chewy but we didn’t mind.
Great as a tea time snack, these Karipap are basically a small pie with dry curried chicken and potatoes in a deep fried pastry shell.

My cousins and I make a simple Karipap for snacks with leftover chicken curry cooked down.

Baked Puff Pastry Curry Puffs
 Left Over Filling on Sliced Baguettes and baked
Left over deboned chicken curry with potatoes
“Kawan” brand puff pastry

Fill a piece of puff pastry with a heaped spoonful of chicken and potatoes. Fold over to form a triangle and seal edges with a fork. Snip a few slits for the steam to escape and brush with egg wash. Bake until golden brown.
Still, there’s nothing that beats watching Karipap being deep frying in a wok of oil. I go to the wet market for this. The size of this XXL Karipap is as big as a packet of Nasi Lemak *(see note)

Sometimes there’s a small chunk of chicken and half a hard-boiled egg inside. These are the good stuff.
Almost a Palm size. XXL Karipap
Say if you’re up to making it from scratch, for the filling that it, this recipe’s pretty good. I’m more of an eyeball cook, working with guesstimate and adjusting to suit taste.

Potato and chicken filling
a few potatoes, diced
half piece chicken breast, diced
some chilli paste depending on taste
2tbsp meat curry powder
1 big onion, diced
3 sprigs curry leaves
salt, sugar and light soy sauce to taste
a little mustard seed
1. Heat oil in wok, sauté diced onions until aromatic, add in mustard seeds
2. Mix in chilli paste, curry leaves and curry powder and fry until fragrant.
3. Add in chicken and potatoes, mix well.
4. Add in a little water and simmer until just tender, season to taste and cook until mixture is dry.
5. Dish out to cool before using the filling.
*Nasi Lemak is a fragrant rice cooked in rich coconut milk with “pandan” screw pine leaves; often considered the national dish. The simplest are sold wrapped in a small square of banana leaf and newspaper. The rice is doused with sweet spicy chilli gravy cooked with fried anchovies and a quarter of a hard-boiled egg.

Doris Lim is a popular freelance writer who blogs as Little Fish on travel and food stories here. Be sure to check out her other inspiring stories and follow her Instagram @SmartDoryID & Facebook to check out more places to eat delicious street foods or dine in the best restaurants!


  1. I still can taste and smell the tangy pickled onions. Didn't liked it then.


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