It’s impossible to dip your toe in South African cuisine without experimenting with a traditional braai. Named for the practice of grilling meat over the fire, braaing is a veritable cornerstone of South African culture.
A typical braai includes meat (of course), vegetables, fish and even sandwiches (braai broodjies). Traditionally a wood fire is tended until all that remains are hot coals over which to grill the food; sometimes though, people use ready-made coals.
Braaing is a highly social activity with a few unwritten rules, and is so popular amongst South Africans that many have built themselves indoor braais so they can eat al fresco even in winter.
A favourite side dish is roosterbrood – essentially bread cooked over the fire. Also known as roosterkoek, these bread rolls are soft and almost doughy on the inside with a smokey crust on the outside. Divine! Check out our recipe below for Samara’s take on this braai classic. Of course, it tastes even better when accompanied by a night camping out under the stars…
- 1 kg bread flour, and more for dusting
- 10g instant dry yeast
- 1/4 cup sugar
- pinch of salt
- lukewarm water
1 – Mix the flour, yeast, sugar and salt together in a large bowl
2 – Form a little pool on top and add a bit of lukewarm water
3 – Knead the dough until it is nice and smooth, adding more water/flour as required
4 – Cover it in a muslin cloth or plastic container and set aside for approximately 1 hour
5 – Allow the dough to rise until it has roughly doubled in size
6 – Roll it out on a flat surface lightly dusted with flour, and segment into squares a few centimetres wide
7 – Arrange the dough squares in a tray ready to be placed on the fire
8 – Place on the grid atop the warm coals. Make sure that the coals are not too hot or too close to the dough, as this might cause the outside of the rolls to burn whilst the inside stays raw.
9 – Once the bottom starts to go brown, flip the roll over and braai the other side. You may need to turn the rolls a few times. You should see the dough rise.
10 – You’ll know the roosterbrood is ready if you hear a hollow sound when you tap it
11 – Serve warm!
- Simple snack – preferably with oozing melting butter
- Braai feast – with lashings of braai kos (food) including boerewors, lamb chops or ratatouille.
- As a pudding – with apricot jam (a true Afrikaans favourite)
- As a twist on a classic dish – see our Karoo lamb burger and Karoo Eggs Benedict below.
Samara Private Game Reserve is a luxury Big Five safari destination with a difference. Guests are invited behind the scenes of a passionate conservation journey to restore a unique South African wilderness. This genuine conservation participation combined with heartfelt Karoo hospitality and breathtaking landscapes to offer a safari that feeds the soul.