South African Magwinya Recipe

To any Tswana speaking person, Magwinya, also known as fat cakes, need no introduction. To the rest of the world, this is what put a smile on millions of people living in the townships of South Africa and Botswana. In South Africa the way of eating Magwinya is with polony (similar to bologna).


  1. 500g all-purpose flour (or cake flour without raising agent)
  2. 4 tablespoons or 30g of sugar
  3. 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  4. ½ teaspoon salt
  5. 500ml warm water
  6. 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil ( plus more for deep frying)


  1. Gather the ingredients
  2. In a clean bowl, mix the flour, sugar, yeast and salt together
  3. Add warm water and vegetable oil and begin to mix into a soft dough
  4. Once the dough has been mixed very well, cover with a tea towel and set aside to rise for an hour. There is no need to knead the dough
  5. After an hour, the dough should have doubled in size. Mix the dough again – this helps to achieve softer dough. After mixing, allow the dough to rest further for 10 minutes
  6. In the meantime, heat up enough vegetable oil in a pot for deep frying over medium heat
  7. Scoop out some batter with a large spoon and drop into the hot oil. Use a second spoon to push the dough into the hot oil if needed. Ensure the hot oil is being heated under a medium flame to prevent Magwinya from browning too much. Fry until golden brown
  8. Once ready, scoop the Magwinya out of the pot and place onto absorbent kitchen paper to drain the excess oil
  9. Magwinya can be served alone but goes well with a cup of tea. For extra indulgence, roll it in jam and sugar. Serve immediately.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *