Friday, November 12, 2010

Conserve your energy

Koeksisters


A koeksister or koesister comes from the Dutch word koekje, the diminutive of koekmeaning "cake". It is a South African syrup-coated doughnut in a twisted or braidedshape (like a plait). It is prepared by deep-frying dough in oil, then dipping the fried dough into cold sugar syrup. They are best eaten cold, koeksisters are very sticky and sweet and taste like honey.



This recipe yields approximately 2½ dozen koeksisters.

Ingredients for syrup

  • 4 cups (1000 ml) sugar
  • 2 cups (500 ml) water
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 ml) cream of tartar
  • 1 tablespoon golden syrup
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 cm piece of gingerstem (optional to enhance flavour)
  • 1 cinnamon stick (optional to enhance flavour)

Ingredients for dough

  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon (2 ml) salt
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) butter
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) sugar
  • ½ cup of water and milk mix (100 ml water, 25 ml milk)
  • 1 egg
  • Cooking oil for frying

Method

Please note: it is important to prepare both the syrup and dough in advance, before using it.

Making the koeksisters

  1. Take syrup from refrigerator and keep it ice cold by placing the syrup's container inside a larger container that is filled with ice and water. Another trick to keep the syrup cold is to use two bowls of syrup. Keep one in the refrigerator while using the other .
  2. Roll out dough to a thickness of 7 mm. Do not use dry flour as it will cause the oil to foam, rather roll it out on waxpaper or use sunflower oil to prevent sticking.
  3. Cut strips 15cm long, twist in opposite directions and join ends
    Heat the oil over medium heat until warm but not too hot. If the oil is too hot, the koeksisters will be brown on the outside, but raw on the inside. When the oil's at the correct temperature, it takes 10 seconds for a piece of dough to pop to the surface after it has been dropped into the oil.
  4. Deep-fry four koeksisters at a time, in until brown on both sides.
  5. Remove two koeksisters using a slotted spoon and immediately submerse it in the ice cold syrup. Don't allow them to breathe air. A plastic potato masher is an ideal tool to keep it submersed. Remove the other two koeksisters and drown them in the syrup too.
  6. Keep the koeksisters submersed until it has they are soaked through. Remove from syrup with a slotted spoon and place on a wire rack. To keep them crisp, store the koeksisters in the refrigerator, or even better, in the deep-freeze.

THE SERENITY PRAYER

GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY
TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE;
COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN;
AND WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE.

LIVING ONE DAY AT A TIME;
ENJOYING ONE MOMENT AT A TIME;
ACCEPTING HARDSHIPS AS THE PATHWAY TO PEACE;
TAKING, AS HE DID, THIS SINFUL WORLD
AS IT IS, NOT AS I WOULD HAVE IT;
TRUSTING THAT HE WILL MAKE ALL THINGS RIGHT
IF I SURRENDER TO HIS WILL;
THAT I MAY BE REASONABLY HAPPY IN THIS LIFE
AND SUPREMELY HAPPY WITH HIM
FOREVER IN THE NEXT.
AMEN.

--REINHOLD NIEBUHR