I will not lie to you, I do not know why we call them half cake mandazi, but I love to munch on them lately. I recently shared a photo with a friend and she asked me for the recipe. I thought I had this recipe up already but then I realized I had other types of mandazi recipes up but not this one. I normally take them with a cup of spiced tea. My family loves them too, especially the kids…so I make them quite often on request. I also shared them with a couple of classmates and they loved them. Being away from my homeland, I believe sharing some of my home food is the best way to share my culture with the people out here. I normally freeze the dough in shapes ready for frying so I do not have to start from zero all the time to make them but to thaw the dough. I do the same with chapatis. Check out other mandazi recipes I have shared before here. This recipe can also be used to make cake doughnuts, simply cut out your dough in round doughnut shapes.


  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/2 leveled teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons butter at room temperature
  • 1 egg whisked
  • 3/4 to 1/2 cup sugar (Depending on how sweet you want your half cake to be, I used 3/4)
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons Spices of choice (With spices, I will let you experiment with your own favorites, you can choose one or even a blend of more than one. The include; ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, vanilla….However half cakes taste great without any spices)
  • Healthy vegetable oil enough for frying


  1. Mix together all dry ingredients and sift them into a bowl. That is flour, baking powder, salt and spices.
  2. Add the sugar and mix it in well to blend with other ingredients.
  3. Add the butter and rub it in to get a mixture of fine crumbs.
  4. Add the whisked egg and mix it in for a uniform mixture.
  5. Now add your milk gradually (because you might actually need less) while kneading the dough until you get a soft and pliable dough that does not stick to your hands.
  6. Leave the dough in the bowl, cover bowl with cling foil and let it rest for at least 30 minutes.
  7. After the time of rest, lightly dust a wooden board and rolling pin with flour to prevent the flour from sticking. Then roll out your dough into a disc of about 1cm thick.
  8. Then cut out your mandazi into various shapes as desired using a cookie cutter or plastic tumbler.
  9. To fry heat the oil on medium heat until it is hot enough and not too hot. If it is too hot they will get ready on the outside but not the inside. Or even burn. Test readiness of your oil by adding a small piece of dough, if it bubbles to the top, your oil is ready.
  10. Fry both sides until golden brown. Each side takes about 5 minutes.
  11. Place ready mandazi on top of a rack lined with kitchen tissue to drain off any excess oil.
  12. To serve, you can dash some icing sugar on top of the half cakes. You can add to it some cinnamon as well. Oh do not forget a hot cup of hot spiced tea masala.

Hope you enjoy this recipe. Dont forget to share with me how it turned out. Cheers 🙂