Mouthwatering Homemade Mandazi – Kenyan Doughnuts

One of the items that we sold at our yard sale were Kenyan doughnuts called Mandazi They are also known as Swahili Buns or Swahili Coconut Doughnuts. Mandazi are a type of fried bread which is a popular snack in Kenya. They  can be eaten as a side dish with fruit flavoured dips, with chai (tea) or as a snack on their own.

Mandazi are very similar to a yeast doughnut, and is similarly then fried. One thing that makes them stand out is that often include a few teaspoons of spice such as cardamom, cinnamon, allspice or ginger. This gives them a sweet and aromatic essence to them. Some variations might also include adding coconut milk to add some sweetness or some chopped peanuts or almonds to add texture and flavour.

They are quite simple to make and when you taste them, you will understand what makes them so popular! Give this recipe a try and let us know in the comments or on Facebook how they turned out!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 tsp dry yeast
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp spice (one or more of the following to total one-quarter teaspoon: cardamom, cinnamon,allspice, ground ginger)
  • 2 tbs butter, margarine, or vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup warm milk (optional)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten (optional)
  • pinch of salt
  • oil for deep frying
  • icing sugar for dusting (optional)

Directions

  1. All pastry ingredients should be allowed to come to room temperature if they have been in the refrigerator. When using yeast: mix the yeast with a few spoonfuls of the warm water (105-115 F).
  2. In a mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, and spice (cardamom is most common in Eastern Africa). Add the yeast. Mix the water, butter (or margarine, or oil), milk, and egg together. Gradually add this mixture to the flour while kneading into dough. (If not using milk and egg use additional water as necessary.) Knead until a smooth and elastic dough is formed—fifteen to twenty minutes. Place dough in a clean bowl, cover with a cloth, and allow to rise in a warm place (such as on oven that has been heated to 100 degrees Fahrenheit then turned off) for an hour or more.
  3. Divide the dough into several hand-sized pieces. Roll or press the pieces into circles about one-half inch thick. Cut circles into halves or quarters (or whatever you like). Some cooks (when using yeast) place the dough on a cookie sheet and let them rise a second time.
  4. Heat a few cups of vegetable oil to 300 degrees Fahrenheit in a skillet or deep pot. Fry the dough in the hot oil, turning a few times, until they are golden brown all over. Fry only as many together as can float in the oil without touching one another. Place on paper towels to drain. Serve warm.
  5. Dust with icing sugar if desired

Mandazi-recipe

(Recipe courtesy of http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Kenyan_Mandazi)

(Header photo from Goway Agent News)

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Trip to Kenya

In less than one month, this beautiful family is travelling to Kenya. This is the Ombunga family and parents Jackson and Amanda sit on the Board of Kuamini. (see Jackson’s story in an earlier post!). The whole family is travelling to Kenya in December where they will be making lots of headway for our charity. They will be distributing mosquito netting, books and clothing and they will also be building a large community latrine while there. How exciting is that?

We can’t wait to hear about their visit and share pictures with everyone about their progress.

ombungas

Malaria

One of the major challenges people in Kenya face is Malaria.

Malaria is a mosquito borne infectious disease that is spread by female mosquitos biting unprotected people. Common symptoms of Malaria include fever and headache however in more serious cases people with Malaria experienced slipping into a coma and even death.

The two best ways to prevent Malaria include the use of mosquito nets and insect repellants. Unfortunately these items are not readily available in the areas most affected by Malaria.

Last year over 200 million people got Malaria and over 1 million people died from the disease. Most of those who passed away were children living in Africa. These numbers may actually be higher in reality as many cases were not documented.

The Kuamini team have talked about this serious issue in Kenya and have included this concern in their action plan to bring wellness to the people of Kenya. One of our goals will be to provide mosquito netting to those who need it. This will increase health and well being which will allow people to attend school, go to work and to thrive in general.

I  the future we will look at how to fund the netting, where to get it from and how to distribute it to those in need. Where there is a will there is a way!