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Koeksister Recipe

We found this cool Koeksister recipe by Natasha at My SA Kitchen to share with you all. Baz in particular likes the theme music to this video recipe.

The koeksister arrived in South Africa with the Cape Malays who were sent to the Cape by the Dutch from their South East Asia colonies. It’s original form is that of the koesister but over time South Africans transformed it to the koeksister using different methods of preparation.

For best results prepare the syrup the day before so that it has ample time to cool. You are not in a MasterChef kitchen so time is not of the essence.

Koeksister Recipe | Natasha

Serving: 24 | Prep: 60 min | Cooking: 5 min

For the syrup
Water 530 ml
White Sugar 800
Salt a pinch
Cream of Tartar 2 1/2 teaspoons
Ginger 1 teaspoon
Lemon Juice 1 tablespoon
Cinnamon Stick 1
For the Dough
Self Raising Flour 300 g
Corn Flour 200 g
Salt a pinch
Unsalted Butter 50 g
Baking Powder 25 g
Sugar 1/4 cup
Milk 200 ml
Cream 50 ml
Eggs 2

1 . Prepare the syrup the day before for best results
2 . In a pan heat up the water
3 . Add the sugar, salt, cream of tartar, ginger, lemon juice and cinnamon stick.
4 . Bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer
5 . Stir occasionally
6 . Simmer for 10 minutes
7 . Allow to cool
8 . Transfer to the fridge

For the Dough
1 . Add the dry ingredients to a bowl and mix them together
2 . Add the milk, butter, eggs and cream, mixing it all together
3 . Knead with your hand for a couple of minutes
4 . Wrap in cling film and store in the fridge for 30 minutes
5 . Roll out to a 1 cm thickness
6 . Cut into strips thin strips and then short strips
7 . To plait, tuck three strands together at the top
8 . Fold the outer strips over into the middle, repeating until you reach the end and tuck them together.

1 . Heat up half a pot of oil on a low flame
2 . Place the bowl of syrup in a larger bowl of ice to keep it well chilled
3 . Deep fry the koeksisters, don’t put too many in at once
4 . When golden transfer to the syrup using a slotted spoon draining off as much oil as you can
5 . Leave to soak in the syrup for a while
6 . Transfer to a cooling rack
7 . Cool completely before eating


A koeksister comes from the Dutch word koekje, which translates to “cookie”. It is a South African syrup-coated doughnut in a twisted or braided shape (like a plait). It is prepared by deep-frying dough in oil, then dipping the fried dough into cold sugar syrup. Koeksisters are very sticky and sweet and taste like honey.
Koeksisters are of the Cape Malay origin.The Afrikaner version is much more syrupy and crisp while the Cape Malay version’s texture is more like that of a cake, spicier, and usually covered in dried coconut. There is also a difference in spelling, the latter generally referred to as koesister.

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Some say he holds the world record for potatoes peeled in a minute. It is believed he set this record as a 6 year old while living at the ANC camp in Tanzania during the 1970's