Melkkos … a traditional South African dish.


Who remembers indulging in a bowl of steaming, fragrant Melkkos on a cold, winter evening curled up on a sofa in front of a crackling fire? Having a warm bowl of this heavenly dish in front of me awakens a sense that if I close my eyes I will feel my Mom hugging me.  This must truly be one of the most nostalgic dishes in my memory bank.

Melkkos, which directly translates to Milk Food, is one of those classic South African dishes that is often passed down from a long line of grandparents and parents. MelksnyselsThere are many variations on this dish with the two popular ones being the recipe that I grew up with (and shared below) and the other one is Melksnysels (Noodles boiled in milk) for which I never acquired a taste.

Melkkos is also very versatile … you can enjoy it for breakfast, serve it as dessert to round off a traditional South African meal or have it as a light Sunday dinner.

Some traditions should never die … this is one of them!



  • 2 litres full cream milk
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cardamom pods, lightly crushed
  • Dried orange peel
  • Cinnamon Sugar
  • 300ml cake flour
  • 5ml salt
  • 25ml butter


Combine the milk, cinnamon stick, cardamom pods and dried orange peel in a medium pot and heat slowly to boiling point. While the milk mixture is being heated, mix the flour and salt and rub the butter into the dry mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs. Remove the cinnamon stick, cardamom pods and orange peel from the milk mixture. Sprinkle the crumbled mixture into the boiling milk and simmer for 8 minutes, while stirring with a whisk. Do not over stir as it will turn into mush.

Remove from heat and serve immediately with a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar.

melkkos 3

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