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Malaysian-style Beef Murtabaks

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These gorgeous savoury Asian pastries require a bit of patience to make… but all good things to those who wait, I reckon!

WATCH THIS RECIPE

MALAYSIAN-STYLE BEEF MURTABAKS

PREP TIME

30 minutes (plus overnight resting)
COOK TIME

40 minutes
SERVES

6
Ingredients

½ tsp caster sugar 

½ tsp salt 

½ cup warm water  

270g (9.5 oz) cake flour*  

1 tbsp margarine or gheeplus extra to coat 

1 egg 

vegetable oil, for shallowfrying 

 

Beef filling: 

1 tbsp peanut oil 

1 brown onion, finely chopped 

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped 

3 tsp finely grated ginger  

1 tbsp curry powder  

300g (10.5 oz) beef mince  

2 eggs 

¼ cup finely chopped fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves 

 

Ajat (tangy cucumber & chilli dip): 

½ cup white sugar 

½ cup white vinegar 

1 tsp sea salt 

½ small cucumber, sliced into rounds, then quartered 

1 small Asian red shallot (or eschalot), sliced 

1 long red chilli, sliced 

Steps
Step 1

In a small bowl, dissolve the sugar and salt in the water. Place the flour in a separate large bowl, then add the margarine. Use your fingers to distribute evenly into the flour. 

Step 2

Make a well in the centre. Add the egg and about one-third of the sugar/salt water. Stir, adding the remaining water gradually, until the mixture comes together. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and knead for about 10 minutes until soft, smooth and elastic (you can also use a stand mixer with the dough hook if you have one). Divide dough into 6 equal balls. Coat each ball with extra margarine, then transfer to an oiled tray. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight to rest. 

Step 3

To make the ajat, heat the sugar, vinegar and salt in a saucepan over high heat for 3-4 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool. Place the cucumber, shallot and chill in a small bowl. Pour over the cooled vinegar mixture. This can be made up to a day in advance. 

Step 4

For the beef filling, heat the oil in a medium frying pan over high heat. Add the onion. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until aromatic. Add the curry powder and stir to coat. Increase heat to high. Add the mince and cook, stirring, until browned. Add 2/3 cup water. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes or until water has evaporated. Season with salt. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool. When cooled, stir in the eggs and coriander.  

Step 5

Return the dough balls to room temperature. Lightly oil a work surface. Use the palm of your hand to ‘press’ a dough ball out until it’s very thin (about 2mm, or 1/16”, thick). Place one-sixth of the filling into the middle of the pastry. Fold the pastry – envelope style – to enclose. Carefully transfer to an oiled tray. 

Step 6

Repeat with the remaining dough and mince. Pour enough oil into a large frying pan to come 1cm (a little over 3/8”) up the side. Cook the murtabaks, in batches, for 5 minutes, turning often or until crisp and golden. Drain on paper towel. Allow to cool slightly before cutting into pieces. Serve warm or room temperature with the ajat. 

Note Icon

Notes:

– Try to use cake flour as it is a lower protein flour than pizza or bread flour. You could also use plain or all-purpose flour here if you can’t find cake flour 

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Daphne
June 21, 2022

Excellent!

Followed the filling and dipping sauce recipe and used spring roll wrappers as I was too impatient to wait for the dough to rest!

I loved the taste and was a big hit with my whole family!

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