A South African favourite – Magwinya MARCH 29, 2018

This is one of the most loved South African food. I posted on my status the other day “Looking for your best description of what is amagwinya. How would you explain it to someone in another country”, and the responses are interesting.

Doughnuts that are chewy with no sugar – Thabo Lushaba

Dough heaven – Michelle Banda

Magwinya? A home-cooked fried dumpling with optional filling – Tony Ramohlola

“Many others have called igwinya a township version of vetkoek – a traditional Afrikaner fried dough bread.” This week I try out @LesDaChef’s Magwinya Recipe

What you’ll need for amagwinya:

7 cups cake flour (not self-raising flour)
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons Sugar
1 packet Yeast (10g)
Lukewarm water
Cooking oil (for frying)


  1. In a small jug pour about a cup of warm water and add the yeast. Leave to begin foaming
  2. In a bowl mix all the dry ingredients together and then pour in the yeast. Stir
  3. Add more lukewarm water and mix after each addition until you get a soft dough that is soft but not runny (like bread dough).
  4. Mix with a mixer that has dough hooks attached until the dough starts coming away from the sides. If you don’t have a mixer use your hands and knead for about 15mins. (This is important if you want soft magwinya)
  5. Cover the dough with a damp cloth or plastic wrap that’s bean brushed with oil and allow to rise until double (about an hour).
  6. Heat about 2 litres of oil in a pot or deep heavy-based pan
  7. Magwinya are typically round in shape and a little smaller than tennis balls but its up to you what shape you make them. Roll them into balls with your hands (brush your hands with some oil to stop them from sticking) or roll the dough out flat on a floured work surface and flatten with a roller and cut into rectangular “blocks”.
  8. Test the oil with a small piece of dough, if the dough starts bubbling and rises, the oil is hot enough. Maintain its temperature by reducing the heat now and then. You don’t want the oil too hot. Once the oil is ready. Deep fry the vetkoek.
  9. Keep turning them. Ready when golden brown
  10. Place on kitchen paper to absorb excess oil. Serve

They will keep for 2 or 3 days but they go stale VERY quickly so enjoy them soon.