• The batter is traditionally poured through a funnel, but a squeeze bottle, from supermarkets, makes the process less messy. (Brett Stevens)Source: Brett Stevens
Whether you like it in spirals, in tubes, or the other myriad of shapes, you can't deny that a funnel cake in any form is deep-fried goodness! Here are some of our faves.
1 Nov 2019 - 11:50 AM  UPDATED 25 Nov 2020 - 2:56 PM

We really believe that fried dough makes the world go round and it's not just doughnuts that deserve all the deep (fry) love - enter the funnel cake. Pouring batter into hot cooking oil and frying until golden is the name of the funnel cake game and we've got you covered. 

Syrian fried pastry snail (mshabak)

This Syrian funnel cake is made of a yoghurt-semolina flour batter, is fried in thick spirals to crispy perfection. Let's not forget the quick dunk in syrup, too! We found our favourite at the Ramadan market in Lakemba - we can't wait till next year to try it again! 

Churros with chocolate-custard sauce
Churros with chocolate-custard sauce

These Spanish doughnuts are made for dunking in hot chocolate. Their distinctive star shape is the secret to a crunchy exterior and fluffy centre. 

Saffron zoolbia (deep-fried pastry with saffron sugar syrup)

This simple yet addictive deep-fried Persian dessert works equally well with any kind of sugar syrup. The saffron syrup will continue to develop flavour and colour over a period of seven days, so begin this step up to a week in advance. Made with cornflour and labna for an extra crisp finish

Jangiri (aka imarti)

Jangiri (also called Jaangiri, Omriti, Emari, Imarti),  is made of black urad beans and is piped in a spiralled flower pattern. After deep-frying, these are soaked in syrup until they expand in size. 


Traditionally made for celebrations and special occasions, these deep-fried pastries drizzled with honey are also known as diples. They are made throughout Greece (typically in larger quantities for celebrations) and the shapes vary across the country, from bow ties to curly spirals. They also keep in an airtight container for months, so they're very handy to have on-hand.


This Turkish dessert (sometimes spelt tulumba) starts its life with dough very similar to that of churros - flour, butter and water are stirred over the stove to thicken the starch, before getting egg stirred in vigorously to create a pipe-able batter. Unlike churros, however, these get fried in cold oil, followed by a long soak in a lemon-spiked syrup. 


This popular Indian sweet is always on the table at big celebrations. Made with a rice flour mixture to make it extra crisp, these are best enjoyed with a strong pot of black tea. 

Frittelle Tirolesi

These northern Italian spiral fritter-meets-pancakes hit the crisp notes perfectly. A simple batter dropped into hot oil through a special iron funnel, this Tyrolean speciality is typically covered in icing sugar and berry jam. 

And this strawberries and cream version for good luck...
The batter is traditionally poured through a funnel, but a squeeze bottle, from supermarkets, makes the process less messy.

Treat yo' self
7 Indian desserts to enjoy with your chai
Our list of favourite sweet treats for that time of day: BYO chai!
11 Italian pick-me-ups as good as tiramisu
Because tiramisu isn't the only sweet thang to come out of the little boot!
Yes, olive oil also has a sweet side
From zesty cake to creamy custards and ice-cream, here are the sensational desserts that tap into olive oil's sweet side.
Cheat on pie with a tart this winter
Puff pastry, filo, or shortcrust; a pretty crimped side or rustic free-form galette; a sweet or savoury filling—we have all your winter tart needs covered.
Polish apple cake

The beauty of this homemade apple cake (besides the treasure of homemade goodness) is that it’s not only soft and light in texture but it’s not overly sweet, which lets the apples and spices do all the talking. There’s your cake for breakfast validation, in case you needed it.