A Taste of SA Heritage: Mosbolletjies with Babylonstoren

Mosbolletjies are a quintessential South African treat. Traditionally made with grape must (fermented grape juice) following the annual wine press, the sweet scent of mosbolletjies filling the air is a welcome announcement that the first grapes of “parstyd” in the Winelands are harvested. They’re soft, sweet and incredibly hard to resist! ⁠

The loaf-like treat is a mixture between bread and cake, similar to a buttery, sweet brioche. The texture is soft and feathery, with individual sections that can pull apart for easy enjoyment. Babylonstoren’s tray of glazed mosbolletjies is made according to the traditional recipe and is infused with aniseed. Enjoy them at tea time with lashings of butter. Leftovers can be oven-dried on a low setting to create your own anysbeskuit (aniseed rusks).⁠

Ingredients include: Wheat Flour, Grape Juice, Cow’s Milk, Egg, Sugar, Unsalted Butter, Salt, Yeast and Aniseed.

Made using the first pressing of the wine grapes, the must, this variation of mosbolletjies is fruity and summery – the perfect treat to spread liberally with freshly churned butter. Here is Babylonstoren’s Mosbolletjies recipe:

Sift 3 kg cake flour. Add 60 g salt, 30 g whole aniseed and 500 ml sugar. Mix by hand or with a wooden spoon. Add 3 eggs and rub into the dry mixture. Melt 250 g butter in 1 L milk over very low heat. Allow to reach body temperature, then add to the flour mixture. Mix well. Add 1 L must. Mix well. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead to form a soft, pliable dough. Shape into a ball and rub with a little olive oil. Cover and leave to proof in a warm place until it has doubled in size.

Divide dough into 6 and shape each into balls. Arrange in a greased bread tin. Cover with a tea towel and leave to proof until it has doubled in size. Preheat oven to 180°C and bake for 1 hour. Turn out of the tin and eat warm, with lashings of butter.

Tip: Instead of kneading by hand, you can make the dough in a mixer. If you can’t get hold of must, replace it with grape juice and add 30g of instant yeast to the dry mixture.

Did you know you can buy Mosbolletjies from Babylonstoren? Shop here.

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