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Posted in Baking and Sweet Recipes  

The sweet taste of these twisted plaits of golden dough soaked in thick syrup until translucent make koeksisters a great favourite in South Africa. The secret of their success, is in preparing the syrup a day ahead and chilling it before dipping the koeksisters.

Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Yields: 36 x 85 g


  • 1 kg sugar

  • 500 ml water

  • 2-3 sticks of cinnamon

  • 3 cm fresh ginger (peeled and bruised)

  • 1 ml (pinch) cream of tartar


  • 240 g flour

  • 20 ml baking powder

  • pinch of salt

  • 30 ml butter

  • 125 ml buttermilk

Deep Fry

  • vegetable oil



  1. Bring water to boil, in a saucepan, add sugar and stir until dissolved (wash down sugar crystals adhering to sides of saucepan)

  2. Turn the heat down, add cream of tarter, ginger and cinnamon and simmer for 5-8 minutes. Do not stir

  3. Cool the syrup to room temperature

  4. Divide it into 2 saucepans and place in the refrigerator to chill overnight.


  1. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt, rub in butter, add buttermilk

  2. Mix into a soft dough and knead thoroughly (It helps if you oil your hands lightly when starting to knead the dough)

  3. Cover the dough with a damp cloth and leave dough to rest for 15 minutes

  4. Roll the dough out to a thickness of 5 mm and cut into strips 5 mm wide and 70 mm long or use a koeksister cutter if you have one

  5. Press the ends of two or three strips together and twist or plait, press the ends together again

  6. Keep the dough you are not working with covered with a damp cloth.


Deep Fry

    Making Koeksisters Step 5 
    Making Koeksisters Step 6 
    Making Koeksisters Step 7 
  1. Deep fry until golden brown on both sides

  2. Remove with a slotted spoon and dip the pieces immediately in the ice cold syrup

  3. Remove and place the koeksisters on a wire rack so that the excess syrup can drain

  4. This recipe will yield ± 3 doz (85 g) dainty sized koeksisters - you can make them bigger for a more substantial treat.

  5. Store the koeksisters in a sealed container in the refrigerator. They freeze well and can be served straight from the freezer.

Category: Sweets

Cuisine: South African

Sub-Category: Traditional

Total Views: 3523

Word Count: 1046

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