One pot wonders

2011-08-18 07:17

August 27 is the inaugural National Potjie Day. The event is supported by the Food Network channel, which hopes to make it a fixture on South Africa’s yearly foodie calendar.

You can read all about it on Sunday in City Press’s 7 section.

Below is a quartet of recipes so that you can cook along at home in your own potjie.

1. Former 7de Laan actor Ben Kruger is a potjie king. Below is his unusual biltong potjie recipe.

4 onions, chopped
1 punnet of mushrooms, sliced
1 packet of rindless streaky bacon
5 Frankfurters, sliced
5 Russian sausages, sliced
1 Chorizo sausage, sliced
750g shaved beef biltong, moist
1 packet of pasta (screw or shells)
1 packet Old Mill Stream brown rice (sundried tomato)
250g grated cheese (strong cheddar)
5 litre water

Oil the bottom of the pot. Add onions.
Fry until soft. Add rice and water, enough to cover rice. When rice is soft, add sausages and bacon.
Cover with pasta.
Add water to cover pasta. Cover with biltong slices. Put lid on until pasta is soft. Cover with grated cheese.
Put lid on until cheese has melted. Now serve and enjoy.

2. Cheryl Whitlock is a senior designer at Jenna Clifford Designs, and she knows how to design a potjie too. Paella potjie.

1kg prawns – de-veined and washed
1kg chicken fillets
1kg pork, goulash pieces
½kg onions, sliced finely
10 cloves garlic, crushed
1kg frozen peas
Basmati rice
chillies, sliced

Fry onions until soft. Add pork. Fry until soft (do not stir). Add all spices. Add chicken, rice and water to cover. Fry until soft (do not stir).
Add prawns. Add peas. When everything is soft and cooked through, dish up and enjoy.

3. Chef Citrum Khumalo owns a successful catering company in Midrand, north of Gauteng, and runs Culinary Passions School of Hospitality. He prepares curried lamb neck potjie.

1kg lamb neck
2 tablespoon olive oil
300g bacon, diced
3 large onion, cut into big cubes
2 whole garlic, peeled and left as whole cloves
2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
3 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon chopped chillies
1 clove
1 stick cinnamon
2 tomatoes, cut in big dice
500g baby potatoes, peeled
5l veal or chicken stock
1 bottle of good merlot
½ bunch fresh coriander
Salt and pepper to taste.

Heat oil in a medium-size potjie to brown the lamb neck in small batches. Place the browned meat in a separate bowl.
Brown bacon until crispy. Add onions and continue browning until onions are translucent.
Add garlic and fry for a minute taking care because garlic burns very quick.
Add spices and cook for a further two minutes. Put the meat back in over the fried onions and bacon (do not stir).
Put diced tomatoes over the meat and arrange potatoes on top. Pour prepared stock to just cover the meat.
Cover to simmer for 2½ hours or until meat is tender. Top-up with fresh coriander and cook for another 15 minutes.
Season and serve with brown rice and mashed pumpkin.

4. Phineas Lepuru’s, executive chef at Sun City Hotel, venison potjie recipe is in 7 section. But here is his potjie version of a South African favourite – samp and beans (umngqusho)

3 cups of dry samp and beans, mix
250g margarine
Salt to taste
For the stock:
500g chicken off cuts
100g carrots off cuts
100g celery off cuts
100g leek off cuts
1 400ml water
Salt, a pinch
10g of whole peppercorns

Cover the samp and beans with water and soak overnight. Drain and rinse before cooking.
Separately, bring to boil all the ingredients for chicken stock at a low temperature, adjust seasoning if necessary. Strain with a fine strainer and set aside.
In a large pot, cover the soaked samp and beans with cold water. Bring to the boil.
Reduce heat and let it simmer on a low heat for one to two hours, until tender and the water is mostly absorbed.
Add the chicken stock and margarine; allow it to cook at a low heat temperature until cooked to perfection. Season to taste.

» National Potjie Day is on August 27 at Sun City from 11am.

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