Koesisters with rose syrup

Posted on 4 March 2020

These spiced and syrup-soaked coconut-dusted treats appear whenever family gathers – and especially on Sunday mornings. We’ve added a floral note that calls to mind that other Cape Malay treat, a creamy drink called boeber.

Makes 24–30

For the koesisters

3 cups flour
3 T brown sugar
1½ t baking powder
A pinch of salt
1 t ground cardamom
1 t ground ginger
1 t cinnamon
1 t ground aniseed
1 t instant yeast
1 T butter, melted
¾ cup lukewarm water
¾ cup milk
1 large egg
1 T oil, plus 4 cups for frying
2 cups desiccated coconut

For the syrup:

1 cup water
1 cup white sugar
2 T rose water


1. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, spices and yeast in a large bowl.
2. Pour the water, milk, egg, butter and oil into a jug, and whisk with a fork until combined.
3. Gradually add this liquid to the dry ingredients and mix until a soft dough forms.
4. Cover the bowl with a cloth and leave to rise for an hour in a warm place.
5. Tip the dough onto a floured surface and roll into a sausage shape. Cut it into 2cm slices.
6. Allow the dough slices to proof (leave space between them to expand) for an hour.
7. While the dough is rising, prepare the rose syrup. Gently stir the water and sugar in a sauce-pan over low heat until the sugar dissolves.
8. Turn up the heat to boiling, add the rose water and turn the heat off.
9. Gently press pieces of dough into oval shapes (don’t work it too much or it’ll become ‘heavy’).
10. Heat oil in a heavy-based potover medium heat and fry koesisters in batches, a few minutes per side, until deep golden.
11. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
12. Dunk each one in rose syrup, remove and quickly roll in coconut (be careful as they’ll still be hot). Serve while they’re warm.

* Tip: Make the koesisters even more wicked by filling them with Caramel Treat.

You may also like

yoast-primary - 1012426
tcat - Food and Drink
tcat_slug - food-and-drink
tcat2 - Food and Drink
tcat2_slug - food-and-drink
tcat_final -