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A taste of South Africa

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A taste of South Africa

  • 3 / 27 / 2018
  • Clive Carelse

If you are worried about not finding something you will like in South Africa, let me put your minds and tummy at ease. South Africa has a wide range of cultures and with that foods for every palate.

As a country they are most famously known for their high quality beef, world renowned wine, and Braais. You can find all the standard cuts of beef as well as local specialties like Springbok and Ostrich. The ostrich filet that I had at the Cape Town waterfront was the best steak I have had in my life. South Africa also makes a wide variety of beef sausages and dried beef, like Biltong, which is arguably the best jerky on the planet. The distinguished winelands are in the surroundings of Cape Town in the beautiful Stellenbosch region. Don’t miss out on a tasting when you visit South Africa as the scenery to from Cape Town is gorgeous and they offer half day and full day trips. Many wineries offer tastings and tours for a fee, but you will be sure to find a wine (or two or three) to perfectly pair with any meal. The half day tour I took was slightly rushed to visit 3 wineries, but each stop was unique and offered samples of 6 to 10 of their wines. It was enough for me, but a true wine connoisseur or someone looking for a nice relaxing day from start to finish, I would recommend the full day trip. Braais are South African version of a cook out. They use coal to slowly cook the main dish which can be fish, chicken, or beef and are they are a part of family and friend gatherings around the country. It is an absolute must to try a braai dish while in South Africa. It is quite common that many of the lodges in and around Kruger National Park offer this as a part of their meal service.

In addition to seafood, Cape Town is famous for its Cape Malay cuisine which is a blending of Malaysian, Indonesian, and East African cooking traditions that made their way by navigators to this melting pot.

Cape Town is a scenic coastal town on the southern and western point of South Africa hugging the Atlantic Ocean. It’s vicinity to the water means great seafood. They have several species of tuna as well as Hake, Cape Salmon, and Mahi Mahi that are of great quality. This means anything from great filets to sushi to fish and chips that you can find in the restaurants near Cape Town. They also have lobster, langoustines, shrimp, prawns, oysters and a plethora of other shellfish to tickle your taste buds. I can highly recommend the prawns and hake that I tried while in Cape Town. In addition to seafood, Cape Town is famous for its Cape Malay cuisine which is a blending of Malaysian, Indonesian, and East African cooking traditions that made their way by navigators to this melting pot. The cuisine offers unique spice combinations and foods full of flavor and color. Curries are some of their best dishes and I strongly recommend trying it! Some of you may hear the word curry and think of strong and spicy curry, but this is not the typical curry you will find here. Curry is a mix of many different ingredients and spices and can be spicy or mild or even sweet in flavor, but it is fantastic, and a traditional dish made in the day to day cuisine of South Africans.

South Africa has a lot to offer its visitors and its cuisine is influenced by local cultures as well as cultures around the world. The great wines, beef, and seafood are available all over the country and the lodges offering safari offer a chance to try local dishes as well as international food. You will not be disappointed in the food or drink of this country and make sure you bring your appetite as well as your suitcase when you make the trip.