3 tsp dry active vegan yeast for baking (not the same as brewers or nutritional yeast)
2 tbsp warm water
1/2 tsp unrefined sea or rock salt
1/2 cup date syrup or any fruit syrup (remember argave is very sweet)
1/2 unrefined sugar (I used demerara)
1/6 cup sunflower, coconut or grapeseed oil
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup coconut pulp or dessicated
Coconut milk as necessary – I haven’t specified an amount here because I used coconut pulp which has a lot of milk in it and I only needed the tiniest bit of milk to make the dough. Depending of whether you used pulp or dessicated coconut will determine how much milk you need, add it in sparingly after everything else is mixed together and see how much you need. Using dessicated coconut will probably mean you’ll need 3/4 – 1 cup coconut milk.
1. In a separate cup or bow pour the warm water over the yeast and let it do it’s thing – i.e. give off the ‘yeast’ smell and bubble a little. Whilst it’s doing that move on to the next step. Depending on whether you use regular or quick yeast you can leave it approx 5-15minutes.
2. Put the sugar, salt, syrup, and oil in a large bowl and mix. Note – I used a thick, heavy earthenware bowl for this. It’s not strictly necessary but when fermenting anything be it bread, veg or tofu I prefer to use cookware like this.
3. Add the yeast to the mixure and stir in. It might not blend in properly or go smooth until you mix it, sometimes it sticks together in clumps.
4. Add flour and coconut pulp/dessicated and stir as much as you can. Being bread dough (as opposed to cake dough) and with the added coconut it’ll be difficult to make into a dough using cutlery. Wash you hands again and get in there kneading until you have a smooth, succulent but not sticky dough. Add any coconut milk as necessary to get a dough you’re happy with.
5. Either move the dough to another bowl, lighty oiled, or do I did and just lift the dough, put some oil in and spread it around the bowl with the other hand. Then leave the dough in that bowl.
6. Fermentation time – cover the bowl with a clean, light, breathable dishcloth or piece of muslin and leave alone for approx 1-2 hours (upto 1 for warm and upto 2 for cold environment). Don’t expect it to rise or rise much, with the coconut this is a heavy dough.
7. Get a chopping board or any surface you can roll the dough out flat upon. Add some flour to the surface and spread it evenly. Place the dough on it and roll out to approx 1/2 inch thick. – If you don’t have a rolling pin a large glass or bottle will do.
8. For the shapes you can use your imagination. I don’t have any moulds or cutters so I simply use a cup and a knife. For example:
For the circles and semi-circles:
I used a cup/glass and just placed it in the dough, lifted and removed the dough gently.
For the braid:
I cut a square out of the circle
Then sliced that square into lines
The took two lines and lightly wrapped/twisted them around each other
To make the braid circle I bent them around into a circle and then a) either pressed down on the ends with a fork (like with pastries) b) pushed and re-moulded the ends together with my fingers and added coconut milk to that section to make it sticky.
For the heart shape:
Fold the dough gently, not so much that a line is created down the middle, and carve half a heart shape through it. Gently unfold the dough and voila.
9. Time to heat the oil – use a pan or pot sufficiently deep enough and pour in enough oil, these need to be deep fried as they are heavy and will rise in the cooking.The oil must be hot.
10. Use a spatula and put the dough shapes in the oil. They should fill out quite quickly. If your oil is hot they can be left 2min on each side in the oil. If your oil is very hot (spitting outta the pan and at you) leave them in 1min then turn over for another 1min. (As I made mine too thick I was unsure about the heat and cooked some more than others, they were all delicious though 🙂 )
11. When done remove and get ready to eat! 😀 I personally prefer them hot but they can also be left to cool, whether you place them on tissue/paper is upto you.
These can be eaten alone or with various toppings e.g. chocolate, cream, toffee/caramel, fruit spread/jam, peanut butter etc.
Note – once cool these can be stored in a container or food bag and if desired can be reheated quickly in a frying pan – no extra oil necessary. Enjoy! 🙂