This is my favorite part - the
food from the land! I'm not very familiar with South African
cuisine, or any African cuisine for that matter. My only dish
that I have served from that region in the past is called African Chop
and I'm not even sure it is African. It starts with a bed of
rice and then all sorts of wonderful things are added on top.
This is the type of meal that you serve when you have a crowd over and
every one brings a different topping - green onions, chopped tomatoes,
nuts or sunflower seeds, coconut, raisins, peppers, hot sauce,
whatever else you can imagine would be a fun ingredient. You as
the hostess provide lots of rice and a pot of shredded BBQ beef or
pork. Sounds fun, doesn't it?
Now for some authentic recipes... Remember that
this is a land where East meets West and North has come South - a land
where Indian curries and Indonesian spices meet up with English meat
pies and Dutch cookery. The culinary tastes of this land mirror
its geography, history and culture.
Here are a few favorite dishes.
2 large ripe tomatoes, cut into thin slices
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 fresh hot green chile pepper, minced
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Arrange tomato slices in a serving dish. Sprinkle with salt, sugar,
and minced chile pepper. Drizzle on the vinegar. Let salad sit for
about 15 minutes before serving.
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup raisins
1 teaspoon lemon rind
2 cups white rice
In a large pot, bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Add the first 7
ingredients and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Add the rice,
cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick and lemon rind
Mealie Soup (Corn Soup)
2 ounces butter
1 cup finely chopped onions
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 cups canned whole corn, well drained
2 cups creamed corn
1 can evaporated milk
3 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper.
In a large saucepan, heat the butter over moderate heat. Add the
onions and sauté for 5 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and cook for a
few minutes. Add the corn, milk, stock, salt, and pepper, and simmer
for 15 minutes. Serve with crackers.
Bobotie (Beef Pie)
2 ounces butter
1 cup onions, thinly sliced
1 apple, peeled, diced
2 pounds chopped cooked beef
2 bread slices soaked in milk
2 tablespoons curry powder
1/2 cup raisins
2 tablespoons slivered almonds
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
6 bay leaves
1/2 cup whole milk
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the onions and sauté for 5
minutes, then add the apple dice and cook for another minute. Add the
chopped beef and combine. Squeeze out the excess milk from the bread
slices, then tear up and add to pot. Add the curry powder, raisins,
almonds, lemon juice, egg, and turmeric, and stir well.
Place mixture in a greased 9 x 13" baking dish. Place bay leaves
vertically in the casserole. Bake at 325 degrees F for 40 minutes,
then remove from the oven. Mix together the egg and milk, then pour it
over the Bobotie. Bake for 15 more minutes. Remove bay leaves before
Green Bean Bredie (Lamb and Green Bean Stew)
2 tablespoons oil
1-1/2 pounds lamb, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup coarsely chopped onions
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
1/2 cup water
1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed, cut into 1" lengths
2 medium potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2" dice
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh hot chile peppers
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
In a large skillet heat the oil over moderate heat. Add the lamb
and brown it in batches. Transfer pieces to a plate.
Add the onions, garlic, and ginger, and cook over low heat. Return
the meat to the skillet. Cover tightly, and simmer for 30 minutes over
the lowest heat. Stir in the water, green beans, potatoes, chile
peppers, thyme, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Cover again,
reduce heat, and simmer for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Taste
for seasoning and serve immediately with rice.
Klappertert (Coconut Pie)
1-1/2 cups sugar
1-1/2 cups water
3 cups finely grated fresh coconut
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small bits
2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons apricot jam
1 baked short-crust pastry pie shell
8 strips candied citron, 1" long by 1/8 " wide
Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil
over high heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. cook briskly,
undisturbed, until the syrup reaches a temperature of 230 degrees F on
a candy thermometer.
Remove the pan from the heat, add the coconut and butter, and stir
until the butter is completely melted. Let the mixture cool to room
temp, then vigorously beat in the eggs and vanilla.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a small pan, melt the apricot
jam over low heat, stirring constantly. Rub the jam through a fine
sieve, and brush the jam evenly over the bottom of the baked pie
Pour the coconut mixture into the pie shell, spreading it smoothly.
Bake for about 40 minutes. Filling should be firm and golden brown.
Before serving, arrange the thin strips of citron in a sunburst
pattern in the center of the pie. Serve warm or at room temperature;
can be accompanied by whipped cream.
The people of South Africa make some amazing and exquisite craft items
that they use and sell to make a living, including weaving, beadwork
and carving. Take a peek at some various arts and crafts here on
this South African travel website:
Would you like to attempt something intricate for yourself? How
about weaving a basket? You can learn how to construct a simple
basket by visiting this website -
Or you can check out a book such as this one from your library:
Would you rather attempt something a little less involved? I
would suggest that you and your students put together a South African
flora and fauna lapbook. Never made a lapbook?
A lapbook, also known as a shutterbook, is a file
folder which has been opened onto a flat surface. The two tabs are
then folded into the center where they meet and form a window shutter
effect. The concept is that mini books are attached to the inside
holding various information which your child has collected and
learned. A lapbook can contain games, vocabulary words, pictures,
maps, recipes and clipart. You are limited only by your imagination.
Or you keep it simple by simply printing out some great photos from
the internet (google search animals and plants of South Africa) and
then pasting them into a file folder that can be decorated with some
great patterns and bright colors on the front.
And remember to have fun!
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