I didn't really follow any specific koeksister recipe. Read through a number of variations and was intending to make a vegan batch & a non-vegan batch. Plan fell through as I couldn't get hold of Ogran No Egg - an egg substitute.
The idea was to do two batches, one for work morning tea & one for a pot luck gathering with some friends tomorrow night.
The syrup I made the prior night, it contained the following:
1.5kg caster sugar
4 small cups if water
3 cinnamon sticks
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tspn ground ginger
1 tspn or so of citric acid powder for baking (or aka tartaric acid - it adds acidity to baking / cooking)
Mix sugar & water in small pot until all dissolved, recommend medium heat. Wouldn't want it to boil over. Add the spices (ginger & cinnamon). Carefully add the lemon juice as this will cause the contents to froth/boil up quickly so maintain low heat. Add citric acid if you like a little bit more tarty than sugary.
Leave on low-medium heat until syrup thickens a little more. Remove from heat, allow to cool and the pour into a large container to store in fridge. Chilled overnight is best!
Prepare dough with following:
4 cups of self raising flour (for equivalent plain flour use 2 tspn of baking powder to rise - this will mean leavin dough to rise for 2-3rs)
70g or 4 tbspn of butter
1 cup of water or milk (I used milk for a creamier dough, also if using plain flour this allows it rise better)
Sifting of plain flour & baking powder is required. You can do that for the self raising but I lime the easier way out and just went ahead. Rub butter & flour together, will become slightly crumbly but won't have formed together. Should have no clumps of butter.
If using water, whisk eggs into water and pour in gradually and mix in to flour by hand.
I was lazy and just cracked the eggs in & poured in a cup of milk. Result the dough was slightly too gooey to start with and I had to wait for it rise any way cause I rushed it.
The rolling out to flat sheet and cutting into long 5cm x 10m pcs. Cut each pc twice more, slice length wise but not through the top. You should now have each pc as 3 strands joint at the top. Braid these, practice makes perfect by the end of the batch you'll be an expert. Don't worry about stuffing up, just roll up the deformed braid into a dough ball and start again ;)
Prepare deep fryer with oil, heat up to 180*C, test with a clove or small bit of the dough. Prepare plate with pan toasted sesames. And we're ready to roll.
The frying process - since I had a small fryer I had to do bathed of 8-10. Fry til golden brown, drain oil. Then dunk in syrup, drain from syrup, toss/cover in sesame.
Sesame is optional. The koeksister reminds me of the Tianjing mahua (麻花). So I added the sesame, taste is vaunted different. The following website is in Chinese, when I find an English version of the recipe I'll add or try it out :)