Mandazi (African Donuts)


  • 1 cup warm milk
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup fine white sugar
  • 1 medium egg
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • vegetable oil for deep frying
  • Directions

  • Step 1

    Combine milk, 1/4 cup vegetable oil, sugar, egg, instant yeast, salt, and cardamom in a large bowl. Mix in flour, 1 cup at a time, until dough comes together and is easily handled. Knead dough on a flat work surface until no longer sticky.


  • Step 2

    Put dough back in the bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm area until doubled, about 1 hour.

  • Step 3

    Press dough down gently. Knead it briefly and divide it into 4 portions. Roll each portion into a ball; keep covered with a cloth to prevent them from drying out.

  • Step 4

    Roll 1 ball into a 1/3-inch-thick circle on a floured work surface. Cut into 4 triangles using a pizza cutter. Repeat with remaining balls of dough, keeping other dough covered.

  • Step 5

    Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan over medium heat. Fry dough triangles 3 or 4 at a time, without overcrowding, until puffed like balloons, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn and continue frying until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes more. Drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining dough.

  • Cook's Note:

    Substitute shortening for the vegetable oil if preferred.

    Editor's Note:

    We have determined the nutritional value of oil for frying based on a retention value of 10% after cooking. Amount will vary depending on cooking time and temperature, ingredient density, and specific type of oil used.

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