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Two SA Snacks Revamped

Two SA Snacks Revamped 

These babies are literally French and South African flavors combined into one glorious bite! They kind of just came to me, just because the recipe just didn’t work with me…

I had coffee yesterday with a french acquaintance. She recently opened her new business in the line of Image consulting, the same kind of field that I had practiced back in SA. What are the odds? She opened her office in her boyfriend’s salon. Meaning that she could do a total makeover in her office with a hairdresser and beautician next door. I just love that idea, a one-stop place where you can go and get a new look. I had always thought that Image consulting is huge in France because it is a fashion capital, right? She mentioned that people do not understand the concept. She gets asked “so what do you actually do?” a phrase that I know too well.

My neighbor also came over to tell me that my cat has been having regular sleepovers at her house. It was a bizarre and amusing day, to say the least. When I arrived I was flabbergasted because the culture shock was just so big, but eventually, I defrosted and here I am having coffee dates, with actual french people.

Living a life separate of those around you can be more than frustrating. Inviting those in who have been met by chance, friends, and extended family. It’s easy to choose to make friends. It’s harder to actually make an effort in some relationships when it takes the time to learn. Learn the language, learn different personalities and learning to let people in. I am learning nonstop. You never know you might have something in common.

For now, I am stagnating a bit. I am taking the learning thing day by day. I am struggling to wake up first of all. The shutters here block out the sun completely, so you can literally sleep till twelve in the afternoon. Not so easily done for me, unfortunately. Also, the sun rises around eight in the morning, so the motivation to get up and moving…

Bring on the layers and layers of clothing and with the cold comes the munchies. I want to snack all the time and I’m especially craving all the yummy “bazaar” after church tea goodies. Back home there would be cream caramels, “brandewyn bomme” brandy balls, Muffins with shredded biltong, Koeksisters, Lamingtons, small meat pies, Mini milktarts and all kinds of different salty pastries. I swear I will get to these recipes…


Little pastries are the worst, though, because you could eat and eat and never be satisfied. In France, these little bite size pastries are called Amuse-bouche or Hors d’oeuvre. It is specially prepared by the chef. These little bite size appetizers are then served with a specific wine to compliment the flavors. Amuse- Bouche in English means “mouth amuser”. I just love that!! These are one of the similarities that the french culture and south Africans have in common, we like to eat, to be amused and to socialize.

The “koeksister” recipe has been giving me a heck of a time. I somehow I just can’t get it right. I follow the recipe right down to the T, but gosh no luck. So I just went for koeksister balls! They have a Chocolate chipped center and they are soaked in a caramel, cinnamon syrup. I then used that same syrup to make my cinnamon lamington… two birds with one stone. For the lamingtons, I used a leftover Brioche bread. Brioche is a traditional french sweet bread made with loads of butter and eggs.  It is just divine and adds a different taste to the lamingtons. I know lamingtons are traditionally made with chocolate syrup, but hey I love a good challenge.



Prep Time
Cook Time


10-12 people

So here is the recipe for Koeksister balls filled with chocolate chips and Brioche cinnamon Lamingtons.

Koeksister Syrup
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tsp of lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp caramel flavoring
Dough Ingredients
  • 280 g of cake flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1 whisked egg
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 500ml vegetable oil for frying

Cinnamon Lamingtons Ingredients

  • 1 Brioche bread/ white bread (no crust)/ white cake
  • Leftover syrup from the koeksisters
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tbs cinnamon

Method for the Koeksister syrup 

  1. Place all the ingredients into a pot. Let it simmer until all the sugar has dissolved. Once the sugar has been dissolved let it boil for a few minutes until it resembles syrup.
  2.  Afterward,  let the syrup cool down. Place in the fridge until you’re finished frying the koeksisters. The syrup should be very cold.
Method for the dough
  1. Sift the flour, salt and baking powder. Rub in the butter until it becomes crumb-like.
  2. Thereafter add the whisked egg and the water. Mix with a butter knife. Don’t over mix the dough, it should be a little sticky.
  3. Roll in into a ball, place in a mixing bowl and cover with a cloth/cling wrap and let it rest at room temperature for about an hour.
  4. Once the dough has rested, take the dough and form into little balls.
  5. To add the chocolate chips, press the ball flat onto the palm of your hand and add 3-4 chocolate chips to the center, fold the ball around the chocolate chips.
  6.  To test if the oil is hot enough, throw a little piece of the dough into the oil. If the dough stays on the bottom for a long time then the oil has not reached the right temperature. Once you add the dough and it rises to the surface quite quickly then your oil is ready for frying.
  7. Immerse the koeksister balls into the boiling oil. Once a caramel color (don’t over fry, because this tends them not to soak up all the cinnamon syrup), remove from the oil and immediately place in the cold cinnamon syrup. This step is very important for the balls to be soaked all the way through.
  8. Place in the fridge or place in the freezer for up to one month.

Cinnamon Lamingtons Method

1. These can be made with a brioche bread, white cake or white bread. Whatever is accessible for you.
2. Cut them into bite size square shapes, dip in the syrup and roll in cinnamon, coconut sugar mixture.
Refrigerate and enjoy!

Like the revamping of these snacks? Tell me more!


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