The Weird and Wonderful Flavours of South Africa

Of all the pleasures of travelling, trying new culinary delights is probably one of the greatest. Cuisine from around the world is varied and usually very different from your own so try to find out what the food is like in your country of choice before you get there. It is also a good idea to find out what the names of common dishes are and what they contain so that you know what you are ordering. You may not, after all, want to end up eating insects or some other “delicacy”.

After the 2010 Soccer World Cup,South Africa Was probably better known for its national treasure, soon to be its national export, the Vuvuzela than for its soccer. This horn was heard in living rooms around the world as it blared across the stadia in support of the local teams.

What a lot of people did not know about South Africa is that there is a wide and varied culinary tradition in this country as well. In fact, the unwary traveller could end up with something they had not expected when ordering food in South Africa. Although there is a wide range of western food available in South Africa, some traditional foods could catch you off guard.

Learn some of the following phrases before visiting the country:

1)     Walkie Talkies – Only order these if you like chewing on the beak and feet of a chicken.

2)     Bunny Chow – No, no rabbits are hurt in the preparation of this meal. It consists of a hollowed out half loaf of bread filled with curry.

3)      Boerewors – This is a type of long sausage, traditionally made with meat, fat and various spices.

4)     Biltong – The preparation of biltong begins with the salting and spicing of raw meat. This meat is then hung and air-dried until dry ad brittle.

5)     Chakalaka – This is a vegetable stew – usually based on cabbage that has a definite bite to it.

6)     Bobotie – This is a dish made of curried minced meat that has custard poured over it. It has a mixture of sweet and savoury flavours.

7)     PotjieKos– This is literally food that is slow cooked in a large cast iron pot over the fire.

8)     Koeksisters – These are only for those that have a really sweet tooth. They are pastries that are deep-fried and then soaked in thick syrup.

These are just some of the traditional dishes on offer inSouth Africa– some may appear a little weird. The main thing to remember is to compliment the chef by saying that the food was “Lekker”.

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