- 2 1/3 cups granulated sugar
- 8 cardamom pods (bruised)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 3 star anise
- 1 teaspoon rosewater
- 1/2 cup self-rising flour (sifted)
- 4 ounces soft cheese
- 1/3 cup milk powder (whole)
- 6 pitted dates (dried, quartered)
- vegetable oil (for deep-frying)
- Gently heat sugar, 2 cups water, cardamon, cinnamon and star anise over low heat, without stirring, until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil. Boil, without stirring, for 5 mins, until mixture is syrupy. Remove from heat then add rosewater. Let cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, mix flour, cheese and milk powder until combined. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 6-8 mins, until smooth. Roll 1 tsp dough around each piece of date. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a wok or large saucepan over medium heat. Working in batches, deep-fry balls for 2-3 mins, until golden and cooked through. Drain on paper towels. Transfer to rosewater syrup and let stand for 1 hour before serving.