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Type Pastry
Course Dessert
Place of origin South Africa
Main ingredients Dough, sugar syrup
Cookbook: Koeksister  Media: Koeksister

A koeksister is a traditional South African flavoured syrup or honey infused fried dough. The name derives from the Dutch word "koek", which generaly means a wheat flour confectionary, also the origin of the American English word "cookie".[1] The frying of dough strips in this manner is of Malay/Indonesian origin, possibly with Indian influence, originally eaten as an unsweetened breakfast savoury brought to South Africa with Malaysian workers.

Koeksisters are prepared by frying plaited dough strips in oil, then submersing the hot fried dough into ice cold sugar syrup. Koeksisters have a golden crunchy crust and liquid syrup centre, very sticky and sweet and taste like honey.[2]


A monument of a koeksister in the extreme right wing Afrikaner cultural community of Orania recalls an Afrikaner folk tradition of baking them to raise funds for building of churches and schools.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bradford, Jean (1978). A Dictionary of South African English. Oxford. 
  2. ^ Laurens van der Post (1970) African Cooking, Time-Life Books, New York
  3. ^ Wybenga, Wim (2008-05-01). "Koeksister het sy eie monument op Orania". Volksblad. Retrieved 8 November 2012. 

External links[edit]