Cape Malay Karamonk Biscuit Recipe


These spicy *Cape Malay biscuits are traditionally flavoured with cardamom and ground, dried naartjie (tangerine) peel. As an alternative to naartjie peel, finely grated orange zest works just as well. We serve our karamonk biscuits with Muskadel (or Muscadel), a sweet dessert wine, popular in South Africa.

Recipe by: GOLD Restaurant
Makes: Approximately 20 biscuits
Difficulty: Easy
Preparation 20 minutes
Baking: 15 minutes


  • 50 g soft unsalted butter
  • 15 ml vegetable oil
  • 50 g sugar 1 medium egg, lightly beaten
  • 60 g cake flour
  • 1 ml baking powder
  • ½ ml salt
  • 1 ml ground cardamom
  • 1 ml cinnamon
  • 5 ml finely grated naartjie peel or orange zest
  • 40 g desiccated coconut
  • Glace orange peel or glace cherries for decoration (optional)


    1. Heat oven to 160C.
    2. Cream together butter, oil and sugar until light and fluffy
    3. Beat in egg.
    4. Sift in flour, baking powder, salt, cardamom, cinnamon and orange zest and mix.
    5. Add the coconut and mix to a fairly soft dough.
    6. Roll dough into small balls between floured palms.
    7. Place small dough balls on a lightly greased baking tray (or trays) and press down gently.
    8. Allow plenty of space between each dough ball for spreading when pressed.
    9. Decorate with pieces of glace orange peel or cherries if you wish.
    10. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes until golden.
    11. Cool on wire racks and store in an airtight container.

*”Cape Malay cuisine is best described as fusion food with a distinctive flavour. Each dish is prepared with a considered blend of aromatic spices. “Cape Malay” became the collective term for a rich, vibrant people who originated from various parts of South East Asia, including Malaysia. Originally shipped to the Cape by the Dutch East India Company in 1652 as slave labourers, they brought with them their culture and traditions. They also brought with them their recipes and fragrant spices.” Read more …

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2 thoughts on “Cape Malay Karamonk Biscuit Recipe

  1. Hi Ashiq. We'd have trouble selecting just one as we provide our guests with flavoursome dishes from all over Africa. Thank you for reading our blog and for showing interest in our recipes.

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