I have always
liked loved dusted donuts. Donuts so generously dusted you would think they are glazed. Donuts so fluffy that they almost melt when teeth are sunk into them ( I know my teeth are definitely not happy right now but I’m going to ignore them). For the longest time, I had shied away from making yeasted donuts for fear of messing them up. Because of this, I have hunted for a donut fitting the criteria (should be yeasted, soft to the touch, and dusted) all over Kampala in vain! But then Black Panther came out last week and it got me wondering. What would the majestic peoples of Wakanda eat? I’m imagining elaborate and equally glorious meals. But until I watch the movie and see for myself, here is a soft-to-the-touch, yeasted, and dusted donut with equal parts of sweet potato. I know you are wondering, sweet potato donuts (but still they are white!)? The sweet potatoes add a chewy but still soft texture and a complex flavor. The donuts remain white because of the type of sweet potato I used. I am going to wait for you to make these so we can go see Black Panther together. Deal?
What you will need:
2 C. Sweet potatoes, mashed
1 Tsp. Sugar
1 C. Water
2 C. Flour
3 Tbsp. Sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 C. Oil
2 Tsp. Yeast
1/2 Tsp. Vanilla extract
Additional 1/2 C. Flour
To make the mashed sweet potatoes: Peel the potatoes and wash them. Bring them to a boil till soft and tender. Drain the potatoes and mash them with a wooden spoon while still hot and soft.
The additional half cup of flour is to be used if the dough still feels sticky. Use it sparingly though because you do not want to have doughy donuts.
Make sure that the oil is not too hot. The goal is to achieve a donut that is cooked through while still retaining that golden brown color.
If you have a larger pan (or a frier) you can fry more than one donut at once. I had a small pan so I fried them one by one.
Add the lemon juice, vanilla and the 3 tablespoons of sugar in the mashed potatoes and mix well. In a separate bowl, add one cup of warm water and the 1 tsp of sugar. Stir till the sugar dissolves. Add the yeast and let it grow for about five minutes. Once the yeast has formed, add the mashed potatoes in the yeast mixture and mix well. Next add the oil and mix. Next add the flour spoon by spoon while stirring. Cover bowl and let the dough rise for an hour. After an hour, punch and knead the dough for about 2 minutes. On a clean flat surface, use your hands to spread out the dough to about an inch in thickness. Use a wide rimmed cup or glass to cut out the donuts and a small holed object (think a plastic water bottle) to cut out the donut holes. Repeat the process till all the dough is used up. Let the donuts rise again for another 10 minutes before frying them. Place a saucepan on medium heat. Add oil (enough to submerge the donuts) and let it heat up.
Fry the donuts till golden brown. Drain donuts of excessive oil using a paper napkin. Dust generously with powdered sugar. Let cool.
I have, for the longest time, wondered whether dessert or anything baked/fried can be made from maize flour alone with out adding any other flour like wheat. And my recipes with maize flour on its own have failed because maize flour does not have gluten to bind it when water is added. This little triumphant experiment started out as me wanting to make churros because they seem extremely easy to make and ended up into these sweet bagiya because I have no other name for them really. Also because the sweet aroma of lemon grass is irresistible. I borrowed the churro making method but instead used plain maize flour. These sweet bagiyas are a fun and useful way to utilize your maize flour and they make a great easy to make snack. I could not stop munching away at these.
What you will need:
1 C. Maize flour
1 C. Water
1 Tbsp. Butter/margarine
3 Tbsp. Sugar
A handful of lemon grass leaves
½ Tsp. Vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
Oil for frying
- If you are using a plastic, like I did, cut a small hole at the corner of the plastic and pipe your batter into the hot oil.
- If you are using a piping gun, select a nozzle with the tiniest hole and attach it to the gun.
- Wait for the mixture to cool down before adding the egg so that the egg does not cook.
- Make sure the heat is medium because maize flour burns easily.
- Do not over crowd the pan.
- Add water to a saucepan and add the lemon grass.
- On high heat, bring the water to a boil.
- In a bowl, add maize flour, sugar and salt and mix.
- Once the water has boiled and has released a sweet fragrant aroma, remove from fire and sieve the lemongrass leaves.
- Pour the hot water immediately into the flour mixture and mix until there is no flour visible.
- Add the vanilla and butter and mix well.
- Set the mixture aside to cool for about 10 minutes.
- After the ‘posho’ has cooled down, add the egg and mix till a clear batter is achieved.
- Place your batter in a plastic/Piping gun and pipe into hot oil.
- Fry the bagiya till golden brown.
- Remove the bagiya from the oil and drain.
Let them cool then snack away!
For me, food is closely associated with gatherings, friends, and family. Food plays a huge role in bringing people together and forging relationships. Although A Kitchen in Uganda emphasizes home cooking, once in a while, it’s wonderful to explore what is on the food scene around Uganda.On Sunday the 30th of April, I had the privilege of attending Le Chateau’s Bottomless Brunch and Bubbly; a monthly event that brings people together for brunch. Le Chateau’s monthly bottomless brunch and bubbly is all about bringing people together, creating a great environment for them to let loose and let go and serving up a storm of a variety of unlimited food.I got Bella, a fellow creative and CEO of Enviri Za Nacho (EZN) to come and experience brunch with me.When Bella agreed to come along, I was thrilled because that meant I got to know more about the amazing woman behind EZN and of course share a meal with her.Since the restaurant’s menu is based around Belgian and French cuisine, we had our fill of perfect buttery croissants and macaroons (the desserts are great!). There was an endless supply of drinks, cheese, fruit, dessert, an assortment of cold cuts and chips-exactly what you need on the lazy Sunday when you don’t want to do anything in the kitchen. Le chateau is situated along Ggaba Road in Nsambya; right next to the USA Embassy. The restaurant has a wonderful ambiance; a cross over between modern, lush greenery and traditional African-a photographers dream really! It threatened to rain that day but ended up showering a little which created the perfect mood for an epic brunch affair. With an awesome personal attendant, an array of different foods, an endless supply of drinks, to say that we had a wonderful time is an understatement. I will let the pictures speak for themselves. Yes, I know you like what you’re reading. And yes, it’s every end of the month. And oh, it’s family friendly too. Couldn’t get any better!
Next one is on the 28th May 2017. Thank me later.