Ku Chai Ah (chinese flaky pastry)

June 8, 2008

   
This is one of my fave. My mom used to make it for me but since now she is so far away, I have to make it myself 🙂
This kind of pastry is also used to make theo chew mooncake or to make pia, the sweet chinese pastry, the popular pia is filled with mung beans paste.

As far as I know, this ku chai ah comes from South China region.. but has been adapted to different ways of fillings in many asia countries… so feel free to use any kind of filling you like. You can make curry puff for example from the same recipe.. but i prefer the original version 🙂

Ingredients:
Pastry
(A) Water-based dough, mix together:
500 gr plain flour
150 ml cooking oil
1 tbsp sugar
250 water (adjust the water amount.. you may need more or less, depends on your flour quality)
1/2 tsp salt or chicken powder

(B) Oil-based dough, mix together:
250 gr plain flour
150 ml cooking oil

For Filling:
400 gr dried sea weed (ce chai) (soaked until tender then drained)
1 tsp minced garlic
100 gr minced meat (i like chicken) (the filling taste even better if you use chinese red roast pork)
1 tbsp minced chive (or more if you prefer)
salt, sugar and pepper as needed
some MSG if you like

Directions:
To make the pastry:

Take a portion of water-based dough, shape into a round. Flatten it with the palm of your hand or with a rolling pin. Take a portion of the oil-based dough then wrap it inside the water-based dough.

Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a flat square. Turn it over, lift one end up and roll ala swiss roll into a log. Give the long a 90 degree turn. Roll it flat with the rolling pin. Lift up one end and roll into a swill roll one more time.

Cut the log into two equal pieces. With the cut face down and spiral showing, flatten the dough with a rolling pin into a round piece of pastry.
Placing the pastry on the palm of your hard, cut face down. Place filling in the centre of the pastry, fold and seal edges.

Flute the edge with finger tips. Deep fry till golden brown.

You can also bake it in oven. 200°C for about 40 minutes, depends on the size of your pastry

To make the filling:
Heat up some oil, stir in garlic, cook until fragrant.
Add the minced meat/chicken.
Add the seaweed, stir well.
Now you add in the spices, adjust it to your taste.
Cook till the mixture is quite dry. Remove and leave aside to cool.

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