SOUTH AFRICAN KOEKSISTER
This Recipe Makes 8 Koeksister’s
The South African Koeksister is a traditional Afrikaner dessert, prepared by frying a dough & then infusing it in syrup or honey.
The word “koek” derives from the Dutch word, meaning a wheat flour confectionery & “sister” refers to the tradition of two sisters plaiting doughnuts & thereafter dunking them into syrup. Most often, people mistakenly think that the word “sister” in koeksister refers to a sibling, as the Afrikaans spelling in this case is “suster“. As a result, koeksister is sometimes misspelled as “koeksuster”.
Koeksisters are traditionally made with yeast, although for this recipe I have omitted the yeast. They are still as delicious as the ones prepared with yeast.
South African Koeksister Ingredients:
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ cup sourmilk (maas) or plain yoghurt
- ½ cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup desiccated coconut (optional)
- vegetable oil for deep frying
- Add the all purpose flour to a mixing bowl.
- Add in the baking powder.
- Mix well.
- Add in the butter.
- Using your hands, rub the butter into the flour.
- It should resemble breadcrumbs.
- Pour in the sourmilk (maas) or plain yoghurt.
- Thereafter, pour in the milk.
- Mix well until a dough forms.
- The dough will not be so pliable, so flour a surface & begin kneading the dough until smooth.
- Once the dough is smooth, place it in a lightly greased bowl & cover the bowl with cling wrap. All the dough to rest for an hour or more.
- Whilst the dough is resting, get started on the syrup.
- Add the sugar to a small pot.
- Pour in the water.
- Add in the cinnamon stick.
- Turn up the heat to medium & stir until the sugar dissolves.
- Once the sugar has dissolved, bring the mixture to a boil.
- Thereafter, turn down the heat to low & allow the syrup to simmer for 20 minutes.
- When the syrup is done, remove from heat & set aside.
- When the dough is done resting, it should be much softer & would have expanded in size.
- Divide the dough into 8 pieces.
- Take one part of the 8 pieces & divide it into 3 equal parts. This will be used to make the plait.
- Roll the 3 pieces using your palm into rope like shapes. Making sure that their lengths are the same.
- Next, join the top of the 3 ropes together.
- Begin plaiting into a braid – take the far right rope over the middle rope, then the far left rope over the middle rope, continuing until you reach the end. Tuck the bottom of the braid under.
- Continue the same process until all the braids are done.
- Heat enough vegetable oil in a deep pot for deep frying.
- Once the oil is hot enough, carefully place the braided dough’s into the oil.
- After a few minutes you will notice them puff up.
- Fry each side until golden.
- Once the braids are fried, remove & drain off excess oil on a paper towel.
- Next, soak the braids into the syrup that was prepared. Soak them for about 3 minutes on each side.
- These South African Koeksisters may be served as is or you can go ahead & toss them in desiccated coconut.
- Enjoy your South African Koeksister with a hot drink.
- These Koeksisters last up to a week in an airtight container.