Friday 17 December 2010

Libyan Dougnut: Sfinz (سفنز (معجنات مقلية

Sfinz are usually served for Friday breakfasts. Sfinz is a spongy fried bread that can be made plain and eaten with sweet toppings like date molasses and honey, or else fried with an egg. Sfinz doughnuts are also served with afternoon tea. This amount makes about 10-12 sfinz. A great way to use leftover sfinz dough is to bake herb bread.

Makes 10-12 Sfinz
4 cups fine white flour
4 tablespoons olive oil for the dough
4 teaspoons sugar 
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking powder
One cup warm milk and 1/2 cup warm water (or one and a half cups warm water)
1/2 cup warm water for the yeast
(25g fresh yeast or 1 tablespoon dried yeast + 1 teaspoon sugar)
corn oil for deep frying

To Serve:
Qashta cream
Date syrup
Kiri cheese

 In a small bowl mix the fresh yeast and sugar, with 1/2 cup warm water, leave in warm place until it becomes frothy

                     Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl, add the yeast  mix.

Add the olive oil and one and a half cup warm water gradually.  Knead well to get a soft consistency dough, which will be easy to spread by hand later. The sfinz dough is soft and sticky dough, so you need well oiled hands to work with it.

Oil your hands, then shape the dough into a large ball and brush it with oil. Cover with a cling film, and leave until the dough has risen, it should be treble its original volume. (Most convenient is to leave it overnight and finish making the Sfinz the next morning)

Knead the dough again so it falls, then leave to rise again. Next we will start to shape the dough.

Oil a tray, and with oiled hands take a handful of dough and squeeze into large egg size, making about 10 sfinz balls. Place the balls on a well oiled surface and cover them with cling film. Leave to rest for 15 minutes.

Oil a dinner plate. put one dough ball in the middle of the plate. Flatten each ball to the same shape as the plate, dipping your hands in oil as needed. The edges should be a bit thicker than the center, like a pizza crust.

Fry in hot oil. If you are making plain sfinz just fry, turn to the other side until both sides are golden brown.

When you fry sfinz, the top side of the sfinz will pop up as soon as it placed in oil. To make egg sfinz flip the sfinz onto the opposite side as soon as it pops up. This side will have a " hollow." You should have an egg in a bowl ready to pour into the hollow.

Push the sfinz down with a spatula and spoon hot oil on top to fry the egg as well. Once the egg has set you can flip to brown the egg side.

Egg sfinz are great rolled up with a slice of cheese, or just plain, and the egg can be hard or runny.

Drizzle plain sfinz with date molasses, or tear off pieces to scoop up Qashta cream or Kiri cheese and honey.

Sfinz is best eaten as soon as possible after frying, but warms up well in the microwave. It also keeps for a day or two in the fridge if stored in an airtight container.


  1. I love such a homemade Sfinz, and your way in taking the pictures is so professional.
    Keep it up, I wish you all the best in life.

  2. Thank you for the comment, I'm glad you're enjoying the blog.

  3. Hello I tried out the sfinz recipe and it turned out perfect!! sa7ayti!! everyone was so surprised that i made it and it turned out well!! thank you!!

  4. Yay! You're very welcome, I'm glad this recipe worked for you :)

  5. Oh mashAllah I would love to try this inshAllah. I love your site its so much like our food in Saudi.


  6. Hi Noor, thanks for dropping by and let me know how it goes when you try out the recipes. Your site looks great, will have to try some of those dishes!

  7. salaam,This looks delicious. I have always loved the taste but did not know how to make it.I tried your recipe unfortunately mine did not come up as nice looking as yours. Don't know what went wrong :(