During my internship in Uganda, I'm rooming at the CARITAS Learning Center on the same campus as the Stella Maris Primary and Secondary Boarding Schools. I'm fortunate to have Teddy prepare meals during my stay here.
This morning Teddy cooked a sweet Ugandan treat – mandazi, which are similar to American donuts, but not quite so sweet and served without the glaze or frosting. Mandazi are popular throughout East Africa. They can be purchased from small stands in Nkokonjeru for about 400 shillings each (about 12 cents in USD).
A simple recipe is as follows (there are many variations):
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
4 cups flour
2½ cups warm water
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon spice (optional, consider using cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, etc.)
Mix butter and flour until crumbly. Add sugar to warm water and slowly mix in flour/butter mixture. Add baking powder and knead dough until smooth. It should be soft and airy, but not sticky.
Roll the dough until it is about a half inch thick and cut it into pieces. Triangles, about 2 inches at the base, are the most common shape, but strips, squares, etc. can also be used.
Roll the dough until it is about a half inch thick and cut into pieces. Triangles, about 2 inches at the base, are the most common shape, but strips, squares, etc. can also be used.
Pour about 2 inches of oil into a frying pan over high heat. When the oil is hot, add the dough pieces. Fry until golden brown on both sides. Fry only as many together as can float without touching each other.
Place on paper towels to drain. Serve warm (mandazi may be stored and reheated later). If desired, sprinkle with powdered sugar to serve.
Variation: Substitute some of the water with coconut milk and add a quarter cup of dried coconut milk to the dough.