These fried dough treats are from the market in Banlung, Cambodia. The provincial and commercial capital of Ratanakiri Province, a remote region near the Vietnamese and Laotian borders with a large ethnic minority population and beautiful jungle and nature preserves, it is also where guest houses, hostels, hotels and restaurants cluster for the locals and the increasing number of foreign visitors who mostly come to trek and see a wild area before more deforestation takes place and the once mighty mahogany forest is totally replaced by cashew and rubber tree plantations.
To get back to the fritters, these are made of rice four as near as I could ascertain and covered in sugar. The ones with the sticky brown topping are frosted with palm sugar syrup, which is sweet without being cloying and has a strong taste of its own, perhaps a bit vegetal, that I found very pleasant.
Conveniently, these pastries were located right next to my favorite coffee vendor in Southeast Asia, but that's a post for another day.