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Pasta Potjie

JanBraai Pasta PotjieDuring my formative years of high school, my father expected me to start taking over part of the braai duties, like making the fire. As I progressed in my braai career, I was later even allowed to turn the grid, on his instruction from a chair of course. At that time my mother also started teaching me a few kitchen fundamentals, like how to make a lasagne. During this era of my life, one of our family’s favourite restaurants served a pasta that I absolutely loved. So much so that at that young and inexperienced age I embarked on a research and development project to recreate that dish at home. It so happens that you can prepare this meal extremely successfully in a classic three-legged potjie on the fire. Truth be told, it’s even better this way.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 4–6)

  • 500 g pasta
  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 tot butter
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 3 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1 packet bacon (250 g, chopped)
  • 1 punnet mushrooms (250 g)
  • 4 chicken breast fillets
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup cream
  • fresh green herbs (chopped, optional for serving)
  • lemon wedges (to serve, optional)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Place your classic potjie on the fire and boil the pasta in salted water until 80% done. The trick here is to not boil it all the way, as we’re going to add it back to the meal later for a second round of cooking. Drain the partly cooked pasta from the pot and preserve some of the liquid in a cup.
  2. Put the potjie back on the fire and add the oil, butter and chopped onion. Sauté the onion for a few minutes until it starts to get a nice colour.
  3. Now add the chopped garlic, chopped bacon and mushrooms to the pot. Depending on the size of the mushrooms and how much you like to make extra work for yourself, you can either chop or not chop them. Stir-fry until the bacon and mushrooms are cooked.
  4. While the bacon and mushrooms are cooking, scrape some coals from the fire and braai the 4 chicken breast fillets. You can season them with normal salt and pepper or your favourite braai spice. Chicken breast fillets take about 6 to 10 minutes to braai, so this meal is going to come together very nicely at the end!
  5. Back to the pot: Once you are happy with the bacon and mushrooms, add all of the 80% cooked pasta from step 1 back to the pot and add the cream to it. Stir through paying specific attention to the fact that the pot should not run dry and burn. If at any stage the pot looks a bit dry, add some or all of the pasta water you preserved in step 1 or consider impact players like butter and olive oil.
  6. Once the chicken breasts are braaied, remove them from the fire and artfully slice them diagonally into strips. Now mix the chicken breast strips into the pasta.

AND…

If you’re so inclined and attuned to the finer details, the meal can be finished with a drizzle of high-quality South African olive oil, fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice.

Paella

JBVE_MAU02_017Catering and kitchen shops sell a type of fireproof steel pan that is perfect for the preparation of this dish, so perfect in fact that this pan is widely referred to as a ‘paella pan’. Paella actually means ‘pan’ and this is where the name of the dish comes from so get yourself one of them. Failing that, any normal cast-iron pot also does the job.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 8)

  • 8 chicken pieces (thighs and/or drumsticks)
  • 2 kg shellfish (in the shell – like black mussels and prawns. If you’re using just meat without shells, 1 kg is sufficient.)
  • 500 g fresh fish fillets (cut into blocks)
  • 250 g spicy cured sausages (sliced or chopped – like chorizo or pepperoni)
  • 2 tots olive oil
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 2 peppers (chopped – green, red or yellow)
  • 2 cups rice (uncooked)
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed or chopped)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 4 tomatoes (chopped)
  • 3 cups fish, chicken or vegetable stock (3 cups is 750 ml which is also the size of a wine bottle)
  • 1 cup black olives (pitted)
  • 250 g peas (they come in frozen packets of this size)
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 tot parsley (chopped)
  • salt and pepper
  • lemon wedges

Please note that as with most dishes cooked on a braai, paella ingredients are not exact. Take these ingredients as a guideline.

WHAT TO DO

  1. In a large pan on the fire, fry the onions and peppers in the oil for 3 minutes. Your coals should be just hot enough to actually fry the onion. As the steel of the pan is much thinner than a cast-iron pot, it will be a bit more sensitive to heat.
  2. Add the rice and mix well. All the rice should be thinly coated with oil. If this is not the case, add a bit more oil. Fry the rice for a few minutes until it turns pale golden in colour. Now add the garlic, paprika, turmeric, chilli powder and chopped tomatoes and stir fry for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add the stock and cover the pan with a lid or with tinfoil. The rice should now cook until soft, which will take about 35 minutes in total. Slightly reduce the heat under the pan by scraping away some coals. You are allowed to lift the lid now and again to stir the rice, and to monitor that it is not burning. Should everything seem a bit quiet, scrape a few extra coals back under the pan.
  4. After 20 of those 35 minutes, add the seafood, spicy sausage, olives and peas to the pan. Stir it in and cover the pan again. The seafood will cook in these last 15 minutes. Monitor your liquid level and add the wine if the pan becomes dry. If the wine is in and the pan still dry, start adding small amounts of water.
  5. On the side, and timing it to be ready with the rest of the dish, braai the chicken pieces in a grid over coals. This will take about 20–25 minutes.
  6. When the rice is soft, sample the dish and add salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Arrange the chicken pieces on top, garnish with parsley and lemon wedges, and serve immediately.

Creole Chicken Curry

Jan Braai Creole Chicken CurryWhile on holiday in Mauritius a few years ago, my brother-in-law and I used to skip the tourist traps and head to the eateries the locals favoured to eat some proper traditional Mauritian curry called cari poule. Although authentic Mauritian curry powder isn’t readily available in South Africa (or anywhere else but Mauritius for that matter), you can substitute it with any mild curry powder with added fennel and cardamom. Best practice is to marinate the chicken for a few hours before you start, or even overnight.

WHAT YOU NEED (serves 6)

For the marinade:

  • 4 cloves garlic (crushed or chopped)
  • 1 tot fresh ginger (crushed or chopped)
  • 1 tot fresh thyme leaves (finely chopped)
  • 1 tot fresh parsley (stems included, finely chopped)
  • 2 tots medium curry powder
  • 1/2 tot ground fennel (just grind or pound fennel seeds)
  • 4 cardamom pods
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tots vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup water

For the rest of the curry:

  • 2 kg chicken pieces (bone in, remove skin from some of the chicken pieces or the meal will be very fatty)
  • 1 tot vegetable oil
  • 2 onions (chopped)
  • 2 tins chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • fresh coriander leaves (to serve)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Mix all the ingredients for the marinade together in a large marinating bowl, then add the raw chicken pieces and toss to coat on all sides. Cover and let them marinate in the fridge for a few hours, or preferably overnight.
  2. Heat the oil in a potjie and fry the onions until they are soft.
  3. Take the chicken pieces out of the marinade and add them to the potjie. Fry until the chicken starts to get a golden colour (don’t add the rest of the marinade that is left in the bowl just yet). You don’t need to cook the chicken completely; at this point you just want to give it some colour.
  4. Now add the rest of the marinade and simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes.
  5. Add the chopped tomatoes, salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 1 hour, until the chicken is tender and would start to ‘fall from the bone’ if you manhandled it. So work carefully, or it will actually fall off the bone. Now remove the lid and let the potjie simmer until the sauce has reduced to your liking.
  6. Take the potjie off the fire and serve with white rice, topped with fresh coriander leaves – just tear them off the stalk or chop the whole lot up if you prefer.

AND …

In my experience, you’ll enjoy this curry best with a view of the sea and a side of white rum and coke. Then round it off with an afternoon nap in the shade of a tree.

Pulled Pork Potjie

JBVE6_EP02_IMG_023The concept of pulled pork is very simple. We start with a very cheap cut of meat that is fairly tough. The meat is generously spiced until it has real attitude and we then slow-cook it in a potjie until it’s so soft we can just pull it apart. Pulled pork is not really a meal for two. The size of the meat and time it takes to prepare means that when it’s pulled pork, it’s a party! This recipe is incredibly easy, especially if you follow it. Phone you butcher ahead of time and ask him to prepare a 2 kg piece of deboned pork shoulder. For a competent butcher this is a piece of cake and it’s not a particularly expensive cut of meat either. Failing this, 2 kg of pork shoulder on the bone will work just as well. Supermarkets generally sell pieces of pork meat of roughly this size. Your weapon of choice here is a no. 2 or no. 3 three-legged potjie or a no. 10 flat-bottomed one. You make the dressing sauce ahead of time and you’ll also do most of the work for the pork a few hours in advance. By the time your party guests arrive, all you need to do is occasionally add a few coals under the potjie and of course, serve up a great meal.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 10)

TO PREPARE THE MEAT

  • 2 kg pork shoulder (or other piece of pork meat)
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tot paprika
  • 1 tot brown sugar

FOR THE POTJIE

  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 onion (sliced)
  • 4 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • 3 cups liquid (see step 6)

FOR THE RANCH SAUCE

  • 1 bottle buttermilk (2 cups)
  • 1 tub sour cream
  • 3 tots chives (freshly chopped)
  • 1 tot Dijon mustard
  • 1 lemon (juice and zest)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper

WHAT TO DO

  1. To make the sauce you shake the bottle of buttermilk before opening its top. Now throw that and all the other ingredients for the sauce in a bowl or jug and mix well. Cover whatever the sauce is in and put in in your fridge until you’re ready to serve the meal.
  2. Prepare the meat by mixing all the spices together then rub the spice blend into the pork shoulder.
  3. Get some flames under the potjie, add the oil and onion, and fry the onion for a few minutes.
  4. Now add the garlic and the whole chunk of pork to the potjie.
  5. Brown the pork shoulder on all sides. You can take as long as you like to do this but aim for 10 minutes.
  6. Your cooking liquid should be 3 cups in total – 2 cups of chicken stock and 1 cup of beer, cider, white wine, red wine, apple juice or ginger ale. Add all 3 cups to the potjie and let the potjie heat up to a gentle simmer. Now close the lid. The potjie should bubble very slowly for 3 to 4 hours until the meat is very soft and starts to fall apart by itself. Every half hour or so you can lift the lid and flip the meat over. If at any time the potjie is running dry, add a bit more cooking liquid, using any of the options.
  7. When the pork is done, remove from the fire and let it rest somewhere to relax a bit. Use two forks to pull apart and shred the pork. Taste a piece and congratulate yourself. Now mix all the pulled pork with all the remaining liquid in the potjie.
  8. Your guests can build their own creations by piling a generous helping of pulled pork meat onto a roll, and topping it with ranch sauce, slices of gherkin and slices of onion.

AND…

Make the rolls with 10 soft burger rolls, 4 big gherkins (sliced into thin strips with a vegetable peeler), and 1 red onion (thinly sliced).

Irish Soda Bread

JanBraai Irish Soda BreadFrom an effort point of view, there are three types of bread: flatbread, bread made with yeast, and bread made with baking soda. Flatbread types use no raising agent whatsoever and are consequently flat like roti. Then there is yeasted bread that uses some form of yeast to make it rise. To activate this yeast takes time and you need to knead the dough. Our third bread category uses baking soda to create bubbles in the dough to make it rise. Unlike yeast, baking soda does not need to be kneaded to do its work. In fact, many expert bakers agree that when using baking soda, not only should you knead the dough as little as possible, you should actually not knead it at all! I know what you’re thinking and yes, this is super fantastic news.

The baking soda needs something to react with and we will use buttermilk for that something, as it will also add some taste to the bread. Although you can quite successfully bake a lily-white soda bread, I prefer the taste and coarse texture of wholewheat and oats. When you’re travelling the backroads and get hold of a truly great jar of jam at a farm stall or market, this is the bread it deserves.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 6–8)

  • butter (for oiling the potjie)
  • 3 cups Nutty Wheat flour (or wholewheat flour)
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 bottle buttermilk (2 cups)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Smear the inside of your no. 10 flat-bottomed baking potjie generously with butter.
  2. Put all the ingredients, except for the buttermilk, into a mixing bowl and mix well.
  3. Now add the buttermilk and stir with a wooden spoon until everything is combined. Remember, not only is it unnecessary to knead the dough, it is better not to. So as soon as everything is properly mixed you are good to go.
  4. Flop the dough into the prepared potjie, dust the top of the bread with some extra flour (this is purely for cosmetic purposes) and use your favourite and sharpest pocket knife to cut a cross in the top of the bread. As with the flour dusting, this cross is only for cosmetic purposes and makes no real contribution to the taste of the end product. (But we all know good-looking food tastes better.)
  5. Now close the lid and bake for about 45 minutes until done. You want some coals under the potjie and some coals on the lid. When any particular coal loses motivation, discard it and replace with a new one. There is no particular risk in baking the bread too slowly but if you rush it, it might burn so rather err on the side of caution.
  6. After 45 minutes, remove the lid taking care not to spill too much ash onto the bread. A bit of ash is fine, again, for cosmetic purposes. Insert the tip of a knife into the bread and if it comes out clean, the bread is ready.
  7. If the bread does not stick to the potjie at all and comes out whole, great. If it sticks to the bottom of the potjie a bit, don’t worry. Take a spatula, go in on the lines of the cross you cut earlier and take it out in quarters.

AND…

This recipe works with any combination of 4 cups of flour. You could drop the oats and go with just 4 cups of Nutty Wheat or wholewheat flour. Or use 2 cups of Nutty Wheat and 2 cups of normal white flour. You get my drift.

Ierse Soda Brood

JanBraai Irish Soda BreadWat moeite betref, is daar drie tipes brood: platbrood, brood wat met gis gemaak is, en brood wat met koeksoda gemaak is. Platbrood gebruik hoegenaamd geen rysmiddel nie en is daarom plat; byvoorbeeld ‘n Indiese roti. Dan is daar gegiste brood wat gis in die een of ander vorm gebruik om dit te laat rys. Om die gis aan die gang te kry kan ’n tydjie neem en jy moet die deeg knie. Ons derde broodkategorie gebruik koeksoda om borrels in die deeg te maak sodat dit kan rys. Anders as met gis, is dit nie met koeksoda nodig om die deeg te knie om sy werk gedoen te kry nie. Om die waarheid te sê, die meeste bobaas-bakkers stem saam dat wanneer jy koeksoda gebruik, jy nie net die deeg so min as moontlik hoef te knie nie, jy moet dit eintlik glad nie knie nie! Ek weet wat jy dink, en ja, dis superfantastiese nuus.

Die koeksoda het iets nodig om mee te reageer en in hierdie geval is karringmelk daardie iets, want dit sal ook die brood ’n bietjie smaak gee. Al kan jy met sukses ’n leliewit-sodabrood bak, verkies ek die smaak en growwe tekstuur van volgraan en hawermout. Wanneer jy met die agterpaaie reis en jy kom by ’n plaasstal of mark op ’n regte lekker fles konfyt af, is hierdie die brood wat hy verdien.

This recipe is also available in English here.

WAT JY NODIG HET (vir 6–8 mense)

  • botter (om die pot mee te olie)
  • 3 koppies Nutty Wheat (of volgraanmeel)
  • 1 koppie hawermout
  • 1 teelepel koeksoda
  • 1 teelepel sout
  • 1 bottel karringmelk (2 koppies)
  • jou nommer 10-platboompotjie

LAAT WAAI!

  1. Smeer die binnekant van jou nommer 10-platboompotjie rojaal met botter.
  2. Gooi al die bestanddele, behalwe die karringmelk, in ’n bak en meng deeglik.
  3. Nou gooi jy die karringmelk by en roer met ’n houtlepel totdat alles gemeng is. Onthou, dis nie net onnodig om die deeg te knie nie, dis beter om dit oor te slaan. Sodra alles ordentlik gemeng is, is jy reg om aan te gaan.
  4. Smeer die binnekant van jou nommer 10-platboompotjie met genoeg botter. Dop die deeg in die geoliede potjie uit, strooi ’n bietjie ekstra meel bo-oor (dis net vir die mooiheid) en gebruik jou gunsteling- en skerpste knipmes om ’n kruis bo-op die brood te sny. Soos met die meelstrooiery, is die kruis net vir die mooi en maak nie regtig ’n bydrae tot die smaak van die eindproduk nie. (Maar ons almal weet dat kos wat goed lyk, beter smaak.)
  5. Sit nou die deksel op en bak vir omtrent 45 minute tot gaar. Jy wil ’n klompie kole onder die potjie hê en ’n klompie op die deksel. Wanneer ’n kool moeg is, raak ontslae van hom en vervang met ’n wakker een. Daar is nie ’n besondere risiko daaraan om die brood te stadig te bak nie, maar as jy dit afjaag, kan hy brand, so wees eerder rustig.
  6. Ná 45 minute, haal die deksel af en pasop dat jy nie te veel as op die brood mors nie. Steek die punt van ’n mes in die brood en as hy skoon is wanneer jy hom uittrek, is die brood reg.
  7. As die brood glad nie in die potjie vassit nie en in een stuk uitkom, mooi so. As hy effe aan die bodem van die potjie klou, moenie bekommer nie. Vat ’n spatel en druk hom in op die lyne wat jy vroeër in die brood gesny het en haal hom in kwarte uit.

EN…

Die resep werk met enige kombinasie van 4 koppies meel. Jy kan die hawermout uitlos en net die 4 koppies Nutty Wheat of volgraanmeel gebruik. Of gebruik 2 koppies Nutty Wheat en 2 koppies gewone wit meel. Jy weet wat ek bedoel.

BACON, PINEAPPLE AND SWEET CHILLI BURGER

JanBraai Sweet Chilli Bacon Pineapple and Cheese BurgerThis recipe started out life when my parents had a particularly large crop of chillies in their herb garden. You can only use that many chillies in your curry potjies and so we decided to try and make sweet chilli sauce with some of the red devils. Practice makes perfect and before long there was the sweet chilli sauce recipe below, which as you will see once you make it, is very good! I feel that a properly braaied beef burger is the perfect vehicle to carry this sauce to your mouth, and that braaied bacon and pineapple are the best fellow passengers it could possibly wish for.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 4)

FOR THE SWEET CHILLI SAUCE

  • 5 chillies (any type or a combination, with a few extra on standby)
  • 2 cloves garlic (crushed or chopped)
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar (or rice vinegar or white grape vinegar)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tot cornflour mixed with 1/2 tot water

FOR THE BURGER

  • 1 kg beef mince (buy steak and mince at home or ask your butcher)
  • 4 hamburger rolls
  • salt and pepper (freshly ground)
  • 1 packet streaky bacon (250 g)
  • 1 pineapple (peeled and sliced into rings)
  • butter (for the rolls)
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese (grated)
  • salad leaves tomato (sliced)

WHAT TO DO

MAKE THE SWEET CHILLI SAUCE

  1. Chop the chillies finely. If you don’t want too much burn in the sauce, remove some or all of the seeds. If you like it hot, leave the seeds in. If you think the chillies you have are quite mild, use more than 5 chillies. If you think the chillies you have are particularly potent, use your common sense and good luck!
  2. Throw the chopped chillies, garlic, vinegar, water, sugar, salt and soy sauce into a small flameproof pan or potjie, then stir well and bring to a simmer over some coals or a few flames. Naturally this can also be done on a stove.
  3. Simmer for about 6 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved completely; the exact time will obviously depend on your coals or flames.
  4. Mix the half tot of cornflour with a half tot of water in a suitable cup, glass or mug. Add the cornflour mixture to the sauce and stir until the sauce gets thicker. This will take about 1 minute.
  5. The sauce is now ready. Remove from the fire, let it cool slightly while you braai the meat and then serve.

MAKE THE BURGER

  1. Form the mince into 4 evenly sized patties with your hands and flatten out.
  2. When you braai the patties, the biggest challenge is keeping them in one piece. Put them down very gently on the grid, do not press on them, do not handle them any more than is necessary, and turn them with extreme care. Start on very high heat to seal them quickly, hopefully before they have the chance to ‘sink’ into the grid. Braai for about 8 minutes in total. Once on each side during that time is enough. As the meat starts to cook it releases fat and juices and usually loosens itself from the grid. Season the patties with a grind of salt and pepper while they are braaing.
  3. While the patties are braaing, also place the bacon on your grid and braai until crispy. Also braai the pineapple slices for 5 minutes on each side so that they caramelise and sweeten.
  4. As the elements on the grid become ready, remove and use that empty space on the braai grid to toast the insides of the rolls after you’ve buttered them.
  5. Assemble the burger with your freshly homemade sweet chilli sauce as the crowing glory.

Bread Pudding Potjie

JanBraai Bread PuddingThere are two reasons why you should make the recipe we have here: It’s very easy and it tastes great. Your weapon of choice is a no. 10 flat-bottomed baking potjie. Everything that can possibly go wrong when making bread pudding is taken care of by the preparation method in this recipe. It is foolproof, it is the best bread pudding recipe in existence, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. If there were a World Cup of Bread Puddings, this one would not be knocked out in the semi-finals. It would win the trophy.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 8)

  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup dark rum
  • 1/2 block butter (250 g)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 12 slices normal white bread
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tin coconut milk (400 ml)
  • 1 tot vanilla extract

WHAT TO DO

  1. Marinate the raisins in the rum for at least an hour before you start work on this recipe, but a day of marinating is also fine.
  2. Leave the butter outside your fridge for a few hours to soften as this will make the next step immensely easier.
  3. Mix the soft butter, sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl and liberally spread this mixture on one side of all of the slices of bread. Make sure you butter each slice right to its edges. Ration yourself so that there is enough cinnamon butter for all the slices but make sure that by the end you have used it all up.
  4. Now cut the slices diagonally into halves, giving you 24 triangles. If you cut each one separately you need to slice 12 times but naturally you can stack them and slice a few at a time.
  5. Arrange all of the bread triangles in the pot. There is no right or wrong way to do this, simply pack them into the potjie in whatever way you please.
  6. Now scatter the rum-marinated raisins over the slices of bread in the potjie.
  7. There is no reason to discard the raisin-infused rum. Pour it on ice with something like ginger beer and enjoy as a cocktail.
  8. Whisk the eggs. A fork is fine, you don’t need an actual whisk – this is not a cooking school exam.
  9. Now mix the coconut milk and the vanilla essence with the whisked eggs.
  10. Pour this mixture over the bread and his friends in the pot. Put the lid on the pot and let the wet stuff soak into the dry stuff for a few minutes before baking.
  11. With the lid still closed, bake for 30 minutes until firm and golden-brown. This is a very easy process where you just need some coals underneath the pot and on top of the lid. Our aim here is that the sugar melts, the egg cooks and that the whole dessert is piping hot throughout. By the time all of this is done, the top exposed parts of the bread will be nice and crispy. These well-buttered but now crispy parts of bread add texture to the final product. As we buttered all slices of bread properly at the outset, they will not be dry, just crisp. It’s one of the reasons why this is the best bread pudding ever.
    You can serve it as is or with ice cream or whipped cream.

Bobotie Potjie

janbraai bobotieBobotie is a South African classic and an important part of our culinary heritage. It’s also one of my favourite meals, but this doesn’t make me special: everybody loves bobotie. As with many other South African cult hits, you can cook it very successfully in a potjie on a braai fire. I believe it’s your moral duty to perfect the art of making bobotie. It’s a great way to show off when you cook for visitors to South Africa.

WHAT YOU NEED (serves 6)

  • 1 tot oil
  • 3 onions (finely chopped)
  • 3 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
  • 2 tots medium strength curry powder
  • 1/2 tot ground turmeric
  • 1 kg beef mince, ostrich mince or venison mince
  • 1/2 tot salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup apricot jam
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup almond flakes
  • 1 tot vinegar (or lemon juice)
  • 5 bay leaves
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • rice (to serve)
  • chutney (to serve)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Heat the oil in a flat-bottomed potjie over a medium-hot fire and fry the onions and garlic until the onions are soft but not brown.
  2. Add the curry powder and turmeric, then fry for a minute – the bottom of the potjie will look quite dry, but don’t let the mixture burn.
  3. Chuck in the mince and fry for about 10 minutes, stirring it to break up any lumps with a wooden spoon. The mince should change colour from red to light brown, but shouldn’t turn dark yet. The meat should release some juices – use these juices and your wooden spoon to loosen any sticky bits on the bottom of the potjie.
  4. Add the salt and pepper, apricot jam, raisins, almond flakes and vinegar/lemon juice. Stir well, bring to a slow simmer and put on the lid. Simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring once in a while to make sure the mixture doesn’t burn.
  5. Now remove the lid and flatten the mixture with the back of your spoon so that it’s even across the bottom of the potjie. Whisk the eggs and milk together in a small mixing bowl, then pour over the bobotie. Stick the bay leaves into the egg mixture. Cover with the lid and put a layer of hot coals on top of the lid. At this stage you only want coals on the lid, not underneath the potjie. Cook for 30 minutes and the bobotie should be ready.
  6. Serve with rice and chutney on the side.

AND …

You might like to serve sliced banana, coconut or chopped tomatoes with the bobotie.

BLOODY MARY BURGER

Bloody Mary BurgerMillions of people around the world enjoy the combination of ingredients that makes up the Bloody Mary cocktail. As you know, every single one of those ingredients also goes well with a pure 100% beef patty that was braaied on the coals of a wood fire. This brings us to our next magic trick; we’re making a hot sauce based on the classic cocktail and serving it with braaied burgers.

WHAT YOU NEED (feeds 4)

  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 red onion (chopped)
  • 1 red pepper (sliced or chopped)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tin tomato cocktail juice (200 ml)
  • 1?2 tot Worcestershire sauce
  • 1?2 tot Tabasco sauce
  • 1 lemon (juice)
  • salt and black pepper
  • 1 kg beef mince
  • 4 hamburger rolls butter
  • fresh lettuce leaves
  • 4 celery sticks (for garnishing)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Heat the oil in your fireproof pan and fry the onion and red pepper until soft. Add the paprika and fry for another minute.
  2. Add the tomato cocktail juice, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce and juice of the lemon, and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.
  3. 100% beef mince patties do not need any binding agents like egg or bread crumbs. You just need to braai them like a pro. Start by shaping the mince into 4 evenly sized patties with your hands. If you’re doing this ahead of time, put them on a flat even surface like a plate and keep in the fridge until you braai them. Get the thickness equal all round – we’re not making meatballs remember, and they should not look oval with a hump in the middle when you look at them from the side.
  4. Braai the patties with care. The only way the patties will break apart is if you break them apart. This happens if they stick to the grid, sink into the grid or you turn them all the time – so don’t let any of these things happen. Put the patties down very gently on the grid and do not press on them. The patties are 100% steak so braai them exactly as you would a whole steak of the same size. Braai them on very high heat to seal them quickly before they have the chance to ‘sink’ into the grid. They should spend about 8 to 10 minutes in total over the coals. Once on each side during that time is enough, and twice on each side is the maximum. Don’t fiddle with the patties to check whether they are sticking. As the meat starts to cook it will release fat and juices and usually loosen itself from the grid.
  5. During the final stages of the braai, toast the insides of the buttered rolls.
  6. Assemble the burger, starting with the lettuce on the roll at the bottom followed by the patty. Divide the sauce among the 4 burgers. Add some extra freshly ground pepper and the top half of the roll. Garnish by skewering the burgers with a celery stick, which will not only look cool, but also hold it all together. Serve with additional Tabasco sauce. Cheers!

COQ AU VIN – CHICKEN IN REDWINE POTJIE

Coq Au vinFrom my personal experience, this classic French dish is even better cooked in a potjie on a fire, using South African wine. The rule of thumb when cooking with wine is that you should use wine of the same quality that you drink. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to open a new great bottle of wine especially to make this potjie. It just means that if you had a braai dinner party and are left with some half-finished bottles of wine, this is exactly the meal you should cook on one of the days thereafter. You need one bottle of red wine in total, which can be a blend of more than one wine as long as they are all of a decent standard.

WHAT YOU NEED (serves 6 hungry guests)

  • 2 tots oil (or butter)
  • about 20 small pickling onions (peeled and whole)
  • 1 carrot (chopped)
  • parsley equal in volume to the carrot (chopped)
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 packet smoked streaky bacon
  • 1 packet whole button mushrooms (about 250 g)
  • 2,5 kg chicken pieces (any mixture of thighs, drumsticks, breasts)
  • 1 tot cake flour
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 1 tot tomato paste
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper (coarse, freshly ground)
  • 1 tot parsley (chopped)

WHAT TO DO

  1. If your chicken pieces have skin on them, pull off all the skin that is easy to remove, for example on the thighs and breasts. Leave the skin on the difficult ones like drumsticks; it’s definitely not worth the effort to get it off them.
  2. Put your potjie over medium coals and add the oil or butter. As soon as there is heat, add the whole onions, carrot, parsley, thyme, bacon and mushrooms. Fry until the bacon starts to turn golden brown.
  3. Add the chicken pieces and fry for a few minutes until they brown slightly.
  4. Sprinkle the flour over everything, and stir to coat all of the chicken pieces.
  5. Next add the red wine and the tomato paste, and stir well. Put the lid on the pot, and simmer for about 60 minutes until tender. Now remove the lid and let the sauce reduce until you are happy with the consistency.
  6. Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir well. Take off the fire, add the chopped parsley and serve with cooked white rice.

AND …

Just to confirm, in case you were in any doubt, you serve this meal with red wine.

COQ AU VIN – HOENDER IN WYN POTJIE

Coq Au vinIn my ondervinding word die? beroemde en klassieke Franse dis die beste berei in ‘n potjie op ‘n vuur met Suid-Afrikaanse wyn. Wanneer jy wyn in jou kos gebruik, behoort dit van dieselfde gehalte te wees as wyn wat jy sal drink. Dit beteken natuurlik nie dat jy ‘n goeie bottel wyn spesiaal vir die? resep hoef oop te maak nie. As jy mense met ‘n braai onthaal het en daar is ‘n paar halfgedrinkte bottels wyn oor, is di?t die dis wat jy moet maak. Jy het altesame een bottel se rooiwyn nodig, maar dit kan ‘n mengsel wees solank alles van billike gehalte is.

The English version of this exact recipe is available here.

WAT JY NODIG HET (vir 6 honger gaste)

  • 2 sopies olie of botter
  • omtrent 20 klein uitjies (soos wat jy sou inle?; afgeskil en heel)
  • 1 wortel (opgekap)
  • pietersielie (fyngekap, dieselfde volume as die opgekapte wortel)
  • 4 takkies vars tiemie
  • 1 pakkie gerookte streepspek
  • 1 pakkie heel knopie- sampioene (omtrent 250 g)
  • 2,5 kg hoenderstukke (enige mengsel van dytjies, boudjies en borsies)
  • 1 sopie koekmeel
  • 1 bottel rooiwyn
  • 1 sopie tamatiepasta
  • 2 teelepels sout
  • 2 teelepels swartpeper (grof, varsgemaal)
  • 1 sopie pietersielie (fyngekap)

LAAT WAAI!

  1. As jou hoenderstukke vel aan het, trek dit af in die geval van stukke waar dit maklik is om te doen, soos dytjies en borsies. Los maar die vel aan moeilike stukke soos boudjies.
  2. Sit jou pot op medium hitte en voeg die olie en botter by. Sodra daar hitte is, voeg jy die uie, wortels, pietersielie, tiemie, spek en sampioene by. Braai oor medium hitte totdat die spek goudbruin begin raak.
  3. Voeg die hoenderstukke by en braai vir ‘n paar minute tot effens bruin.
  4. Strooi die meel oor alles en roer om die hoenderstukke daarmee te bedek.
  5. Voeg die rooiwyn en tamatiepasta by en roer deeglik. Sit die pot se deksel op en laat prut vir 60 minute tot sag. Haal die deksel af en laat ‘n bietjie van die vog uit die sous verder afkook.
  6. Voeg sout en peper by na smaak. Haal van die hitte af, voeg die pietersielie by en bedien met gekookte wit rys.

EN …

Net om te bevestig, indien jy dalk wonder, jy bedien die gereg saam met rooiwyn.

Beef Wellington

Jan Braai Beef WellingtonEverything tastes better on the braai, in this case it’s the classic Beef Wellington.

What you need:

  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 250g mushrooms (finely chopped)
  • 1 cup (250ml) cream
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 300 – 500 g steak (rump, sirloin, fillet)
  • 400 roll of puff pastry
  • grated cheese (optional)
  • smoked ham (optional)

What to do:

  1. Finely chop the onion and mushrooms. Add olive oil and/or butter and the finely chopped onion and mushrooms to a pan and fry until the mushrooms lose their moisture and starts to brown. Then add the thyme.
  2. Add some or all of the cream to the pan and let this mushroom, onion and cream sauce reduce to a fairly thick paste.
  3. Trim the steak of your choice (rump, sirloin or fillet) of all sinews and fat and braai over very hot coals for about 8 minutes until medium rare. Let the steak rest a few minutes and then thinly slice.
  4. Unroll the thawed puff pastry on a cutting board. Spread the mushroom and cream paste on half the surface of the pastry and lay the slices of steak on top of that. Generously season with salt and pepper.
  5. Optional step: finely chop smoked ham and grate some cheese. Add this on top of the current residents of the puff pastry.
  6. Fold the uncovered half of the pastry over the filling and use a fork to press all open sides of the pastry closed and seal it.
  7. Now braai in a hinged grid over medium coals for about 20 minutes until ready. You want the pastry golden brown and crispy and all ingredients heated and melted throughout. As puff pastry braais there will be a moment where it seems to ‘melt’ and sag into the grid. Don’t panic. After this it will firm up again and start to cook.

Gebraaide Beef Wellington

Jan Braai Beef WellingtonAlles proe beter op ’n braai, en in die gaval is dit die klassieke ‘Beef Wellington’. Hier is die resep soos ek hom in die Bolandse dorp Wellington gebraai het. Die vulsel bestandele was so ’n bietjie te veel vir een rol pasty deeg, so mettertyd sal ek die resep hier onder nog ’n bietjie aanpas deur 2 rolle deeg (een onder en een bo) of minder vulsel bestandele te gebruik. Jy kan enige van die twee opsies uitoefen wanneer jy hom die naweek by die huis maak, en dan vir my terugvoer gee.

The English version of this Beef Wellington recipe is available here.

Wat jy nodig het

  • 1 ui (fyngekap)
  • 250g sampioene (fyngekap)
  • 1 koppie (250ml) room
  • 1 rol pasty deeg (ontdooi)
  • 300g – 500g steak (rump, sirloin of fillet)
  • kaas (opsioneel)
  • gerookte ham (opsioneel)
  • olyf olie
  • sout & peper

Laat Waai!

  1. Braai die fyngekapte ui en fyngekapte sampioene in ’n pan saam met olyfolie of botter. Gooi dan van of al die room by en laat dit afkook totdat dit ’n dik pasta vorm.
  2. Sny alle oortollige vet en senings van die vleis af en braai die steak oor baie warm kole tot medium-rou. Laat die steaks ’n paar minute rus en sny dit dan in dun repies.
  3. Rol die pastydeeg uit op ’n snyplank en smeer die sampioen room mengsel oor helfte daarvan. Pak die repies steak bo op dit en geur behoorlik met sout en peper. Indien jy so voel kan jy ook kaas en ham bygooi, maar dit is opsioneel.
  4. Vou nou die skoon helfte van die deeg bo-oor toe en druk die kante van jou pasty vas met ’n vurk.
  5. Braai vir omtrent 20 minute oor medium warm kole in ’n toeklaprooster tot gaar. Die gereg is gereed as die deeg goudbruin en bros is, en die bestandele deurwarm en gesmelt is. Soos jy pastydeeg braai ‘smelt’ dit op ’n stadium en begin dit in die rooster insak. Moenie bekommerd wees nie. Net hierna begin dit gaar word en dan raak dit meer verm.

Pork Neck Curry

JanBraai Pork Neck Curry

I have absolutely no idea how this curry tastes when it’s cold or what it’s like the next day. It always gets completely polished off during the eating of the meal. Your ratio of great food to effort is very high here too and if it takes you more than 1 hour from the first step to serving the meal, you’re doing something wrong. The pork neck chops are tender to begin with so there’s no need for hours of simmering. The two tots medium curry powder used in the recipe is not a printing error so do add all of it. Medium curry powder really does not have a lot of chilli in it. Adding this much packs the meal with spice and flavour while still keeping the mouth-burn levels way below anything that should concern you or your guests.

What you need (feeds 4)

  • 8 pork neck chops 1 lemon (juice)
  • 1 tot oil or butter
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • ginger, equal in volume to
  • the garlic (grated)
  • 2 tots medium curry powder
  • 2 tots apricot jam
  • 2 tots tomato paste (or a 50 g sachet)
  • 1?2 tot salt
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup cream

What to do:

  1. Cut each pork neck chop in half, throw them in a bowl, and squeeze the lemon juice over them. Toss around to distribute the lemon juice evenly.
  2. Heat the oil in your potjie and fry the onions for about 4 minutes.
  3. Now add the garlic, ginger and curry powder, and toss together for a minute.
  4. Add the pork chops and fry in the potjie until all of them have a bit of colour.
  5. Add the apricot jam, tomato paste and salt, and stir in.
  6. Now pour in some of the water and use it to scrape loose all the sticky bits on the bottom of the potjie. Once you’re satisfied with your efforts, add the rest of the water and mix it in.
  7. Heat the potjie to a simmer and close the lid. After 20 minutes, remove the lid and let it continue to simmer until half of the liquid has reduced and evaporated.
  8. Stir in the cream and let it continue to simmer until half of the liquid has reduced again. Practically speaking, let the potjie boil without the lid until you are happy with the consistency of the sauce.
  9. Remove the potjie from the fire and serve with basmati rice, yogurt and chopped cucumber, tomato and onion.

And…

This recipe also works well with chicken. Use a pack of 4 thighs and 4 drumsticks, pull off and discard their skins, drizzle with the lemon juice, and continue from step 2.

Steak with biltong cream sauce

JanBraai_SS_IMG_009Whilst visiting the Inyati rest camp in the Sabi Sands game reserve I prepared the recipe below on the braai. On that particular occasion the biltong and cream sauce was served with braaied Springbok fillet steaks, but you can just as successfully serve this sauce with normal beef steak. As I don’t have a particularly nice photo of the finished meal, I decided to rather post a picture of the lion cubs we saw later that day after having our meal of braaied Springbok steaks with biltong and cream sauce. The lions had Impala on the menu that day if I remember correctly, but again, posting a pic of their food is probably not family friendly either so here a pic of them having their after dinner drink.

Biltong and cream sauce – What you need

  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tot butter
  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped, grated or blended biltong
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon beef stock (dry, not liquid stock)
  • 1 cup fresh cream

Biltong and cream sauce – What to do

  1. Sauté the onion in the butter and oil for about 4 minutes.
  2. Add the biltong to the pan and let it sweat for a minute or 2.
  3. Add the salt & pepper and half of the cream and stir through.
  4. Sprinkle the beef stock over the contents of the pan and stir through.
  5. Add the rest of the cream, stir and let simmer whilst you braai the steaks until you are happy with the consistency of the sauce.
  6. Braai the steaks until medium rare and serve the sauce on the steak.

BEEF MADRAS CURRY

Madras CurryOne of the best things about Britain is not British at all; it’s Indian. The Brits love their Indian curries and the Madras curry, named after the South Indian town with the same name (now called Chennai) is right up there. The dish has some distinctive flavour notes (as those wine-tasting people would say), which you’ll pick up if you make it with all the correct ingredients as listed below. Madras curry is traditionally very hot, so if the thought of a chilli makes you sweat, rather move along to something else or stay here for a delicious meal but leave out the chilli powder. The spices listed below are all things that should be standard items in your kitchen, so if you need to buy some don’t worry, they won’t go to waste – you’ll use them for many other recipes. This recipe was voted their favourite by participants of the 2014 National Braai Tour.

WHAT YOU NEED (serves 4–6)

  • 2 tots vegetable oil
  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 1/2 tot cumin seeds (or aniseed – but not star anise)
  • 1/2 tot ground coriander
  • 1/2 tot chilli powder (optional)
  • 1/2 tot paprika
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tot garam masala
  • 1 kg beef (boneless, cut into chunks)
  • 1/2 tot salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1 tot crushed fresh ginger (or grated)
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 punnet fresh coriander leaves (to serve)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Heat the oil in a potjie over a medium-sized fire. Add the onion and fry for a few minutes until it’s soft but not brown.
  2. Now the spices go in: cinnamon, cardamom, cumin, coriander, chilli powder (optional), paprika, turmeric and garam masala. Stir for a minute until it starts smelling irresistible. Right about now what I call the ‘word of nose’ phenomenon will kick in. Your neighbours will start calling to invite themselves over for dinner. Stay focused and look at the bottom of the potjie, which might seem very dry. Proceed immediately to the next step.
  3. Add the beef, salt, pepper, garlic and ginger. Fry for a few minutes until the meat starts to brown on all sides. The beef will release some juices. Use this to scrape away any sticky bits of spices at the bottom of the potjie. If you struggle, add a very small amount of water to help you.
  4. Pour in the tomatoes, coconut milk and lemon juice. Bring to a very slight simmer, then cover and cook over a few coals (no flames) for 90 minutes until the meat is tender. Don’t confuse tender meat with a government tender. Tender meat is a good thing.
  5. Serve on rice with a yoghurt and cucumber sauce called raita and fresh coriander leaves.

AND … If your potjie is fairly small and the meat will not be able to brown properly all at the same time, do that in batches first, before you brown the onions. Then set the browned meat aside and simply add it back to the potjie in step 3.

Pork Chop Carbonara

Pork Chop CarbonaraWhat we have here is the recipe for my Braaied Pork Chop Carbonara. I obviously found inspiration for this one in the classic Italian pasta from Rome, the Bacon Carbonara. It is interesting to note that Carbonaro is the Italian word for Charcoal Burner. Now as we all know, there is one thing better than a charcoal burner, and that is a wood burner, otherwise known as a braai fire. The original recipe from Rome uses Italian bacon like guanciale or pancetta but to my mind a braaied South African pork chop is vastly superior in quality, taste and texture so what we have here is an improvement on the original recipe. The recipe works well with both fresh and dry pasta, but as egg is a core ingredient my personal feeling is that fresh pasta works better, so go for that if you can hold of it.

What you need (serves 4)

  • 4 Pork loin chops (deboned) or 4 Pork Neck Chops
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 tot butter
  • 1 tot Olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 250 g mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 125 ml Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 250 ml fresh cream
  • 400g – 500g Linguini or Spaghetti
  • Extra Parmesan for garnish
  • Fresh Parsley for garnish

What to do:

  1. Braai the pork chops over medium-hot coal for about 12 minutes until done. Pork chops should be braaied until medium, with an internal temperature of 71 °C. Season with salt and pepper before or during the braai.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a pot of boiling salted water according to the instructions on the packet. Use fresh pasta if possible.
  3. Heat the butter and olive oil in a pan and fry the mushrooms for a few minutes, add the garlic and fry until the mushrooms are soft.
  4. Beat the eggs and properly mix that with the cream. Also mix the grated cheese with that.
  5. Remove the pasta from the heat when cooked and drain. Add the pasta to the same pot or pan as the mushrooms and pour over the mixture of beaten eggs, cream and cheese while the pasta is still hot and mix well. The heat of the pasta and mushrooms will cook the egg. This is a signature part of this dish.
  6. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
  7. Diagonally slice the pork chops into thin slivers and serve on top of the pasta. Garnish with extra parmesan and fresh parsley.

STEAK AND STOUT BEER POTJIE PIE

@janbraai Steak and Stout Beer Potjie PieThe Irish have their own version of National Braai Day, called St Patrick’s Day – the day their country comes to a standstill and has one big party. I’ve been to some St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Dublin as part of my ongoing research and development of National Braai Day. Every single pub in Ireland serves a fantastic pie made with steak and stout. I’ve adapted their recipe to suit our local braai conditions. You make the pie filling in a potjie and you braai the pastry on a grid over the coals. Alternatively, just serve the awesome contents of your potjie on a bed of mash or with a piece of baguette bread!

WHAT YOU NEED (serves 6)

  • 2 tots olive oil
  • 1 kg steak (chuck is best, other- wise rump; cut into blocks of 2 cm × 2 cm)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tot cake flour
  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 carrot (peeled and finely chopped)
  • 2 sticks celery (finely chopped)
  • 1 tot chopped mixed herbs (rosemary, thyme, parsley; or use 1?2 tot dried mixed herbs)
  • 1 can or bottle stout (about 400 ml)
  • 250 g button mushrooms (halved)
  • 1 packet puff pastry (400 g, completely thawed)

WHAT TO DO

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large flat-bottomed potjie over a hot fire. Add the steak cubes, salt and pepper and stir. Shake in the flour, and then stir well to distribute the flour evenly over everything. The bottom of the pot will seem a bit dry, but don’t worry too much about it. Fry for about 5 minutes until the pieces of flour-coated meat turn golden brown.
  2. Add the onion, carrot, celery and herbs, then fry for another 5 minutes.
  3. Now pour in the stout. Stir to loosen any sticky bits on the bottom of the pot, and then bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms, cover the pot, and then simmer over low heat for 1 hour. It is very important to keep the heat low. ‘Low heat’ means a few coals, and no flames of any significance under the pot.
  5. When the pie filling in the potjie is nearly ready (after about 1 hour of total cooking time), unroll the puff pastry from the packet. Now you have two options: either cut the pastry into the shape of the bowls you’re going to serve the pies in, or cut it into squares that you will put on top of the filling on plates or in bowls. Braai the pastry shapes in an oiled, closed hinged grid for about 20 minutes over very mild coals. Turn the grid often until the pastry is golden brown and crispy. Don’t braai them too fast, as there is a good chance they will burn if you do. The pastry will look like it is starting to ‘melt’ at first; don’t worry, it will soon firm up and become easier to handle if you just carefully turn it quite often. This part is optional, you can also just serve the filling on a bed of mash potatoes or with pieces of baguette bread.
  6. When the filling is ready, take the potjie off the fire and stir well. The liquid should be thick and glossy. If not, cook uncovered for a few minutes to let it reduce and thicken. Taste and add salt and pepper if necessary.
  7. Serve by dishing up the filling into bowls or onto plates and then put the braaied pieces of pastry on top of each of them. You could also serve the pies with mashed potatoes if you like.

AND … Although Guinness is the internationally famous example of stout, it’s by no means the only one. You can make this recipe just as effectively with a local favourite like Castle Milk Stout.

Citrus Flavoured Malva Pudding Potjie

Malva PuddingThis recipe is a adaption of my original malva pudding potjie recipe that appears in my 2nd book, Jan Braai – RedHot (Afrikaans edition called Jan Braai – Vuurwarm).  The dough and baked part is identical to the original recipe but I’ve added some freshly squeezed satsuma juice (you can use satsuma, orange, naartjie or any of their family members) for a new take on the old classic.

WHAT YOU NEED (serves 6)

For the batter:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1?2 tot bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tot apricot jam
  • 1 tot vinegar
  • 1 tot melted butter
  • 1 cup milk

For the sauce:

  • 1?2 cup cream
  • 1?2 cup milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1?2 cup freshly squeezed juice
  • 1?2 cup butter

WHAT TO DO

  1. Light the fire. You need fewer coals than when braaing steak, but you’ll need a steady supply of coals once the pudding is baking. Now use butter to grease your no. 10 flat- bottomed baking potjie. You can see a picture of this kind of potjie in the photo collage above.
  2. Sift the flour and the bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and stir in the sugar (you don’t need to sift the sugar).
  3. In another mixing bowl, whisk the egg very well. Now add the jam, vinegar, butter and milk, whisking well after adding each ingredient.
  4. Add the wet ingredients of step 3 to the dry ingredients of step 2 and mix well.
  5. Pour the batter into the potjie, put on the lid and bake for 50 minutes by placing some coals underneath the potjie and some coals on top of the lid. Don’t add too much heat, as burning is a big danger. There is no particular risk in having too little heat and taking up to 1 hour to get the baking done, so rather go too slow than too fast. During this time, you can add a few fresh hot coals to the bottom and top of the potjie whenever you feel the pudding is losing steam.
  6. When the pudding has been baking for about 40 minutes (about 10 minutes before it’s done), heat all the sauce ingredients in a small potjie over medium coals. Keep stirring to ensure that the butter is melted and the sugar is completely dissolved, but don’t let it boil.
  7. After about 50 minutes of baking, insert a skewer into the middle of the pudding to test whether it’s done. If the skewer comes out clean, it’s ready.
  8. Take the pudding off the fire and pour the sauce evenly over it. Believe me, it will absorb all the sauce – you just need to leave it standing for a few minutes. Serve the malva pudding warm with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream, a dollop of fresh cream or a puddle of vanilla custard. A good way to keep it hot is to put it near the fire, but not too close – after doing everything right, we don’t want it to burn now.

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