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South Asian Style Doughnuts

Cook time: 60 minutes

2 1/4 cups sugar
8 cardamom pods (bruised)
2 cinnamon sticks
3 star anise (pods)
1 teaspoon rosewater
2/3 cup self rising flour
1/4 cup milk powder (whole)
5 ounces cream cheese
24 raisins
vegetable oil (for deep-frying)


For the syrup, stir the sugar, spices and 2 cups water in a medium saucepan over low heat, without boiling, until sugar has dissolved. Boil uncovered, without stirring, 5 mins. Remove from heat, stir in rosewater and cool.
For the batter, combine flour, milk powder and cream cheese and mix into a soft dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead 10 mins. Roll a heaped teaspoon of dough around each raisin.
Heat oil in a wok and deep-fry balls, in batches, until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Add to syrup and let sit 1 hour before serving.