Jou ma se vetkoek

To stop drinking coffee is like quitting smoking – you have to find alternative things to do or you will indulge again out of shear boredom. I have taken to drinking alcohol instead…

I’m just joking (which I say in case my mom discovers this blog). As the weather is getting ever more biting by the day (even though the sun is out today), it calls for pondering what to eat. And in weather such as this, pondering what to eat happens very often indeed.

I have finally equipped myself with most of the tools I might need in the kitchen and thus will attempt to cook. Or bake. No, cook, I don’t have an oven. The challenge will be to find the ingredients for the South African recipe for ‘vetkoek’ that my mom has emailed me. There are a few ingredients I have never seen here, never mind know what they’re called in Chinese.

Here, in an un-presidented second useful post, is the treasured family recipe for ‘vetkoek’. I’ve seen similar things in other countries, but can’t remember what they’re called there or in English. It’s fried… as if my cholesterol can afford it, but delicious (aren’t all friend things?). It literally translates to ‘fat cake’ although, I think the fat refers to it being puffy, rather than fat as in dripping.

Oh, the recipe is Metric. Here’s a handy conversion site if you’re stuck with Imperial:

  • 250ml luke warm milk
  • 250ml luke warm water
  • 50ml butter
  • 25ml white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1600ml flour
  • 10g dry instant yeast
  • 5ml salt
  • oil (for frying)

Do this:

  • Mix the milk, water, butter and sugar together.
  • Once the butter has melted, add and beat the egg. As I don’t have proper tools, I heated the mix ever so slightly to encourage the butter to melt.
  • Separately mix the flour, yeast and salt.
  • Add it all together and mix until a smooth, elastic dough is formed. Add more flour if its too messy.
  • Prepare a large mixing bowl and smear with a thin layer of oil.
  • Place the dough in the bowl, and flip it over so that the oily side is facing up.
  • Cover with a cloth and stash in a warm place until it has expanded about twice its original size.
  • Lay the dough flat on a surface coated with flour, and roll and kneed until flat and about 1cm thick.
  • Keep some flour handy, it might still be sticky.
  • Cut in circles (not too big), or tear off clumps and roll in balls, and fry in hot, but not too hot, oil.

Make sure to flip it regularly initially so that it can heat even all around and not just burn.
Drain excess oil on a paper towel. Cut open and stuff with your favourite filling. Jam (jellie) works well, or minced meat stew prepared to taste will do nicely.

Added after:I tried to put filling inside the ball before frying it, but firstly, my filling was too hot and it melted through the dough, and secondly there was too much sauce with the filling which prevented the dough from being cooked properly.

It should work though, but you need to use cold, dry filling instead.

And that’s it. Now to go find those ingredients.

Published by Yaku

Yaku is a brewer, baker, and semi-retired trouble maker (semi-retired from trouble-making that is). Although he believes anything is possible, he is nevertheless frequently stupefied by his world and the people in it.

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