South Africa’s traditional food offers something for every palate. From grand feasting dishes such as stews, aromatic curries to the simple grain porridge, and root vegetables, a South African food safari is a journey of gastronomical delight. Here are some of the traditional dishes that make for an absolute South African food safari experience.
Here’s How to Grab the Best of South African Safari Experiences
Bite into South Africa’s most treasured street food
Delicacy: Bunny Chow
Feed on some hearty Bunny Chow, a delicious South African street food made out of chickpeas, meat, and potatoes in aromatic spices served with hollow bread. That makes for a really special sandwich, comfort food. If you love spices, then this cuisine is a must-have. Based on your preference, you can request your server to serve the bunnies with lamb, chicken, or vegetables. Traditionally, you can also relish it with rice and some vegetables.
Enjoy a sizzle of meat on a braaivleis fire
Delicacy: Pap En Vleis/Shisa Nyama
‘Pap en vleis’ means ‘maize porridge and meat’. ‘Shisa Nyama’ in Zulu means ‘burn the meat’. This is a South African food safari specialty in the ‘bring and braai’ gathering festivity. Serve this popular braai dish and South African food safari delicacy with a rich tomato base known as phutu or sheba and delicious grilled meat on the side. ‘Pap’ is served with ‘vleis’ which means ‘meat’. The tasty dish is full of flavors, delicious floral aroma balanced with natural herbs. Enjoy the lip-smacking South African staple.
Treat your taste buds with a classy Cape Malay dish
Delicacy: Cape Biryani
Gorge on the spicy South African Indian dish also spelled as biryani. Treat yourself to the flavors of a delicious dish made with chicken served with an addition of a boiled egg. Don’t forget to ask for chutney and some crispy salad. You can have biryani with a little serving of tomato and onion salsa on the side as well. Chicken fillets, turmeric, curry powder, cumin, cinnamon, basmati rice, chicken stock, cardamom pods, with a dash of salt and pepper comprise this South African delicacy. You would keep wanting for more!
Dip into Africa’s ‘Pot Food’
Delicacy: Potjiekos and Stew
Try the slow-simmered stew cooked in layers in a three-legged cast-iron pot. The ‘potjie’ is never stirred and is allowed to cook over hot coals for hours to get the best essence and flavors of the dish. This traditional African dish is made in oil with spices like cumin, paprika, carrot, fresh tomatoes, chopped ginger among other ingredients. Add chicken, sweet potato, chicken stalk, and spices along with soft vegetables. Cover the dish until it cooks well. Do not stir it until it is ready to be served. Go on to taste an extraordinary dish that is close to the heart of South Africa.
Indulge in the South African Chicken Pot Pie
The makers fill this delicious shortcut pastry shell with chicken, onions, vegetables, celery, and hard-boiled eggs. It is a street food favorite. Pepper, lemon juice, salt, and bay leaves seasoning makes the pie absolutely delectable. Treat your gastronomical desires with South Africa’s popular pastry that is easy to freeze and makes for a fabulous breakfast on the go. Bake the pie at 200 degrees celsius to get the most fascinating golden crust made in the flavors of olive oil.
Your favorite high-protein dish
Delicacy: Biltong and Droewors
Biltong is a thinly sliced air-dried meat. Droewors is an air-dried sausage. The locals preserve the meat in a unique way called ‘dry curing’. The locals cure the meat in vinegar, sugar, salt, coriander, and pepper, and hung to dry. The dish is popular especially among health enthusiasts as it contains high protein and low fat. You could look for a variety of meat with flavors and topping of chili flakes or garlic that includes ostrich and wild boar meat as well. That is a must-have snack while on a South African food safari.
Relish the Mainstay Vegetarian Dish
Delicacy: Chakalaka and Pap
Chakalaka is a delicious dish made of onions, tomatoes, carrots, beans, bell peppers, and spices. The dish is served cold with pap which means ‘porridge’. People here prefer to relish this lip-smacking dish along with braaied meat, salad, stews, bread, and curries. Chakalaka is a spicy relish with the mouthwatering taste of tomato beans. It is a staple dish in South African homes mainly served during celebrations or gatherings.
So as the saying goes that nothing brings people together like good food.
Recommended Reads: 7 Reasons Why Go For A Luxury Safari in Africa? Complete Guide to Quirky Africa Safari Tours With Tips