The Great South African Bake Off - Past series

BBC Lifestyle



• 1kg sugar
• 500ml water
• 1 lemon, juice of
• 1 orange, peel of
• 2ml cream of tartar
• 30g ginger, freshly sliced


• 330g flour
• 7½ml baking powder
• 1½ml salt
• 100ml water
• 60ml milk
• 20ml oil
• extra oil, for frying

Preparation method


  1. Simmer the ingredients to dissolve the sugars.
  2. Boil for 10 minutes, brushing the sides occasionally with water to retard crystal formation.
  3. Strain syrup.
  4. Chill until ice cold.
  5. Split the syrup into two bowls, keeping half in the fridge.


  1. Combine ingredients, and knead to a soft and pliable dough.
  2. Rest for 15 minutes – if not rested, the dough will shrink back once cut due to gluten not being relaxed.
  3. Cut the dough into rectangles of 2cm x 10cm.
  4. Cut each rectangle lengthways into 3 strips, leaving one side uncut.
  5. Plait the 3 strips and press the cut ends together firmly.
  6. Fry in batches of 4 at 190°C for 6-7 minutes, or until dark golden straw colour. Don’t overload the fryer. Keep the rest of the koeksisters covered to prevent them from drying out.
  7. Dip the koeksisters into the ice-cold syrup while they are still hot. Keep them submerged under the syrup until you can see that they have absorbed the liquid.
  8. Remove from the syrup with a slotted spoon, and place on a wire rack.
  9. The syrup will become hot with use, so replace with the remaining syrup about halfway through.