• Butternut vetkoek with bacon and syrup is a tasty update on the classic South African snack. Loved nation-wide, this syrupy and golden side is a real taste of heritage, but perfect for any day of the year!

    Butternut vetkoek with bacon and syrup

    Serves: 6
    Cooking Time: 1 hr 15 mins



    • 250ml (1 cup) buttermilk
    • 150g butternut, cooked and blitzed to a purée
    • 10g instant yeast
    • 10ml (2 tsp) salt
    • 25ml (5 tsp) sugar
    • 450g cake flour + extra, to knead
    • pinch bicarbonate of soda
    • 30ml (2 tbsp) butter, melted
    • vegetable oil, to fry
    • BACON

    • 250g streaky bacon
    • 30ml (2 tbsp) golden syrup + extra, to serve



    Heat the buttermilk slowly over low heat until lukewarm. Remove from heat. Combine the buttermilk, butternut, instant yeast, salt, sugar, cake flour, bicarbonate of soda and butter. Mix together to form a stiff batter. Lay the dough on a generously floured surface and knead, 15 minutes. Transfer to a mixing bowl, cover with cling film or a damp cloth and put in a warm place to rise until it doubles in volume.


    Knock out the air. Roll out the dough to 2cm thick and cut into squares, discs or rectangles, as desired. Press down gently and form the vetkoek shapes with your hands until they are about 1cm thick.


    Fry the vetkoek in vegetable oil over medium heat (test a small piece first to make sure the oil is the right temperature). As each vetkoek is placed in the heated oil, stroke it softly with a slotted spoon to make sure the vetkoek surface is covered with oil. This will allow the vetkoek topuff up. Fry until golden brown, about 1 minute per side. Drain the vetkoek on paper towel and keep warm or reheat before serving.


    Fry the bacon in a shallow frying pan until golden brown. Stir in the golden syrup and let it heat through, a further 30 seconds.


    Serve the butternut vetkoek with the syrupy bacon and drizzle extra syrup over, if desired.