Mahamri from Mozambique are a more luxurious version of the mandazi from Kenya and are eaten all over East Africa. They are made with coconut milk so are found mostly along the coast. Mahamri are also usually made with yeast instead of baking powder. The yeast and the coconut milk make them lighter, softer and a bit sweeter than the humble mandazi. You do need a little more patience for mahamri as the yeast needs time to let the dough rise. Just like mandazi, mahamri are eaten as a snack with a cup of tea or chai, as breakfast or as with dinner. They are usually not very sweet, but you can always sprinkle icing sugar over them if you have a sweet tooth. Eat them as fresh as possible when the outside is crisp and the inside is still warm and soft.
Mahamri from Mozambique
for 10 small pieces
½ packet of instant yeast (± 3 g/ 1 tsp)
40 g / 3 ¼ tbsp sugar
60 ml / ¼ cup lukewarm coconut milk
½ tsp cardamom (or more / less to taste)
150 g / 1 cup flour
oil for frying
icing sugar to taste
Mix the yeast with the sugar and the coconut milk in a large bowl and let stand for 10 minutes until frothy.
Mix in the rest of the ingredients and knead into a soft dough. Add some water if the dough is still dry and crumbly. Add some flour if the dough is still sticky.
Cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave to rise for ± 1 hour in a warm place (or overnight in the refrigerator) or until the dough has doubled in volume.
Roll out the dough into a square piece of ± 3 cm / 1 inch and cut into 10 square pieces (or shape them more traditionally like the mandazi from Kenya). Cover loosely with clingfilm and leave to rise for another ± 30 minutes in a warm place.
Heat the oil in a large pan or deep fryer to 180°C / 350°F. Work in batches and fry a few mahamri 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Turn regularly.
Take the mahamri out of the pan with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Sprinkle with icing sugar to taste and serve immediately
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