Koeksisters Recipe (South African dessert)!

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Aug 21, 2022
Happy Africa Day! I asked my son’s South African friend’s mother about her Koeksisters (pronounced “cook-sisters”) recipe this morning, and she has just sent it to me, so here it is! For those who don’t know, koeksisters are a South African dessert that is like a syrup soaked donut. Delicious!

For the syrup:
20 oz - Sugar
8 oz - Water
1 oz - Corn syrup
¼ teaspoon – Cream of Tartar
A squeeze of lemon juice
A dash of vanilla extract

For the dough:
12 oz – Flour
4 tsp - Baking powder
A pinch of salt
5 oz - Milk
5 tsp - Butter

For frying:
25 oz - Cooking oil


First you make the sweet syrup so it can cool for later.
1. Combine the sugar and water in a pot and bring to a simmer (remember to stir a lot so it doesn’t burn).
2. After this, boil it for about 10 minutes without stirring. Make sure that it is only boiling gently, not too violent or it could crystallize.
3. Remove from heat and mix in the corn syrup, cream of tartar, squeeze of lemon juice and dash of vanilla extract.
4. Put in the fridge to cool while you prepare the dough.

Next you prepare the dough.
5. Combine the flour, baking powder and the pinch of salt. Gently combine the butter into the mixture with your fingers.
6. Pour in the milk and very gently stir. If you mix it too aggressively the dough will turn out tough.
7. Grab a small amount of dough and roll it into a rope, then join the ends to make a hoop. Twist it in the middle to make an infinity shape.

Next you fry the dough.
8. Heat the cooking oil in a pot. Make sure it is only warm and not boiling hot.
9. Take the sweet syrup out of the fridge and put it on the countertop.
10. Drop the dough in the oil, as soon as one floats, take it out and submerge in the sweet syrup.
11. Leave for about a minute, then take them out (drip off all excess syrup, you can do so on a wire rack). Enjoy!

Can’t wait to make this! Let me know if any of you try it.

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