All posts filed under: South Africa

South African Around the World Lunch

Ava’s South African Lunch

This week Around the World Lunch takes us to South Africa (thanks to your votes on our FB Page). The result is a hearty meal perfect for autumn, packed with nutrition. Watch a clip of Ava introducing this meal (and showing off her South African flag) on Instagram. Get Creative.  Who says creativity must be difficult? In a sea of bologna sandwiches, leftovers are a great way to mix things up and add interest to your child’s lunch! For dinner we made a batch of South African Yellow Rice (a.k.a. Geelrys), seasoned with turmeric, a touch of brown sugar, and raisins. While it’s amazing hot, it’s also decent cold the next day. South Africa is famous for her enormous coiled sausages, called Boerewors made up of beef and lamb or pork. These aren’t available here, so I improvised by browning a couple of small breakfast sausages. For cute-factor (and ease for small hands), try putting them on skewers. Balance. Nutrition is packed into the rest of this lunch. First up? Corn. Garnish a boiled ear of corn with a puff of smoky chile powder – a popular treatment …

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Monday Meal Review: South Africa

 “Almost doesn’t fill a bowl” Zulu Proverb I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: a good friend makes for a great companion in the kitchen. Through the crackle and sizzle, conversation and laughter keep love flowing… right on into the meal… So, I was thrilled when my friend Janine said she’d help me figure out the food of South Africa. She’s South African, so I knew I was in good hands. But then things got a little wonky. Because she’s vegan, I offered to make the meal entirely vegan so she could share it with us. I never expected her to decline. But she did. Here’s the deal: she wasn’t just being polite. Janine insisted, with her smooth slightly British-sounding accent, that we could not eat South Africa without trying their true, traditional dishes. She says they “love their meat,” like Bobotie. Even if she couldn’t eat the food, she thought I might as well go all out and experience the real South Africa… after all, “Almost doesn’t fill a bowl,” as the …

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South Africa’s Yellow Rice | Geelrys

During the week, I’m always looking for a way to get beyond ordinary b-b-boring boiled rice. Hello. Cue our friends of South Africa… they have the answer with “Geelrys,” which literally translates to “yellow rice.” Imagine a pot of turmeric and raisin bejeweled rice… a simple side dish as flavorful as it is gorgeous. Geelrys tastes like a sunrise on the most beautiful morning of your life.   Or, like happy a hug from a good friend. Or, maybe it just tastes like really, really good rice. While you can make Geelrys with any kind of rice you like, I prefer it with Basmati, as does my South African friend, Janine. The cooking time for Basmati is longer than standard white rice, but much gentler; the end result is tantalizingly delicate. There’s really nothing to it… Yellow Rice is definitely weeknight friendly.   P.S. This is a great dish for picky eaters – one to help to broaden their horizons without going too crazy with spices. Serves 6 Ingredients: 2 cups basmati rice, rinsed & drained …

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South African Amarula Coffee

There’s nothing like a drunk elephant to get my attention. Whoa, whoa, whoa. It’ s a little early for that kind of talk. Let me back up a moment. Amarula Coffee is a South African favorite – a breezy concoction that includes your favorite coffee, some brown sugar (the sweetener of choice in South Africa), a shot or two of Amarula, and whipped cream. It’s very much like an Irish Coffee. Why? The Amarula. You can find this creamy concoction at most liquor stores in the United States, next to the Bailey’s. The flavors are quite similar, which makes this drink the perfect nod to Saint Patrick’s Day, South Africa-style. Amaurula is made from Marula fruit. Which brings me full circle, back to the drunk elephants. I’m not sure I can do it justice… so watch for yourself what happens when the elephants (and other animals) feast on the fruit of this treat. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy. (The hungover orangutan is too funny) Ingredients: 3 parts brewed coffee 1 part Amarula brown sugar, to taste …

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South Africa’s Bobotie

Are you ready for a big bite of everything, ever? South Africa’s Bobotie (ba-boor-tea) reminds me of when I was a little girl, playing in the kitchen next to mom. I’d dump every possible ingredient into my little inventions, hoping they’d come out amazing. While chopped apples and pickles didn’t pan out when I was a kid, bobotie most decidedly does. But don’t worry – there’s no apple or pickle in it. So what is in it? Some people call Bobotie South African Moussaka, but I’m not convinced that gives the dish enough credit. My friend Janine says Bobotie is from the Cape Malay region and belies much more Indian influence. At her most basic, Bobotie is a spiced meat casserole topped with egg custard and a few bay leaves. Inside, you’ll find everything from rich curry power, to garlic, ginger, lemon juice, raisins, and almonds. There’s even a scoop of chutney. While this all sounds incredibly overwhelming, the ingredients mellow as they cook. Still not sure? Trust years of history: there’s a reason South Africans love this …

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Menu: South Africa

There’s an old South African saying which goes: “We begin with the meal before the water is boiling.” – South African Proverb Wow. There is truth to these words. Mighty truth. Sure, preparation goes into everything we do, this South African menu is no exception. But that’s not what this proverb is really about. This simple line draws attention to the work that goes into our meals before we ever set out to cook. Yes, we must go to the market. But even before that, someone had to grow our food and get it to the market. Heck, the Amarula in this week’s menu comes straight from South Africa, but can be found in most any liquor store. So when my hand touches that bottle, my hand touches South Africa. Little things like this bring me the most pleasure. And gratitude. Have you felt gratitude today? All recipes and meal review will be available throughout the week. Bobotie [Recipe] A traditional Cape Malay dish casserole… made with a festival of ingredients. There’s beef, curry, raisins, almonds, …

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Landscape scenery in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Photo by Nicolas Raymond.

About the food of South Africa

Ah, South Africa. Almost since the beginning of this Adventure I’ve been looking forward to our week in South Africa. I’m not sure why – certainly the fairy tale mountains that tower above the white-capped ocean is one part of it. As is the bustling city centers and even the dry interior.   But another is that my dear friend Janine is from South Africa. Whenever Janine speaks of her homeland, she gets a dreamy, lost sort of look about her face. She only goes back every 5-10 years, so South Africa remains a palatable slice of her childhood… representing her former youth and vigor, all wrapped up in memory… often more dream than reality. Janine tells me the food is heavy on the meats, especially grilled meats. Considering she’s a vegan, I was surprised when she asserted that I couldn’t “visit” South Africa without having tried some form of their meat. She said “they love their meat” and that almost every meal includes some, particularly in the cities. The funny thing is, while they certainly love their kabobs …

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