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Monday, 21 September 2015

Using Ready Bread Dough to Make Vetkoek

Vetkoek is part and parcel of the South African diet and yet few of us have the time to make the dough, allow it to rise, knead it down and let it rise again. This is why it is so extremely convenient to be able to buy ready-made dough from the nearest supermarket and to turn that into vetkoek. Let me show you how easy it is to cheat your way into these delicious vetkoeke.


Sprinkle a baking tray with flour. This prevents the dough from sticking to the tray.


Ask the bakery at your nearest supermarket for white bread dough. If they want to know how much you want, tell them about a kilogram. They don't always ask and sometimes assume. The dough will rise while you shop and on the way home.


Sprinkle flour generously on your work surface and coat your hands with flour as well. Remove the dough from the plastic and beat it down.


I had a little helper who was happy to assist in cutting the dough to desired sizes. When cutting the dough to size, bear in mind that the dough will double in size when given enough time to rise.


Put the cut dough on your prepared baking sheet and leave in a warm place in the sun to rise. Covering the dough with a plastic sheet will speed up the process. Make sure to coat the plastic with flour as well, or sprinkle flour over the dough to prevent it from sticking to the plastic. On a warm day the dough will rise in an hour or two. I will take longer in colder weather.


Once the dough has risen, bring oil to heat. I was making a lot for a function and heated two pots of oil.


My dough could have risen even more, but I had run out of time. The more the dough rises, the lighter it is. These have risen enough to not be heavy and clumpy.


You know your oil is ready when it boils like this when you add the dough. Test with a small piece of dough. Do not put the dough in cold oil or it will absorb too much of the oil.


Pouring hot oil over the vetkoek allows it to rise up and create vacuums in the center which can be filled with mince. This step is optional and entirely a personal preference.


Once golden brown, turn the vetkoek over in the pot.


Allow to drain on kitchen towels. Serve hot and fresh from the pot if possible. This can be served with mince, curry, jams, syrup, cheese or any filling of your choice. No need for butter.


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