When I am not travelling (that is over 300 days of the year) I have to invent something to fill up the time. Apart from processing pictures from my past trips, taking pictures here in Malta and planning my next ventures, I have a passion which can take me virtually around the world: Cooking. I love to experiment with new recipes from around the world and I spend hours on the internet searching for something delicious to cook. An integral part of a country’s culture is its cuisine and when I travel I always look for a nice spot where I can get a true taste of a traditional dish.

I got a taste of African cuisine while travelling in South Africa. One of the dishes I tasted was the Bobotie. When I read the name on the menu of a restaurant I wasn’t even able to read it correctly and obviously I was not aware of what the ingredients where. However I went for it and it proved to be delicious. It is based on minced meat and in South Africa they use Ostrich meat. Unfortunately it is no longer possible to purchase South African ostrich meat apart from within the country itself due to the outbreak Avian flu, however this dish can be easily made with beef mince. It is then topped with an egg-based topping.

Here is the recipe for anyone interested in giving it a try:

Ingredients

500g beef mince
1 large carrot – peeled and grated
2 chopped onions
Some chopped garlic
One teaspoon each of ground coriander, ground ginger, curry powder, cinnamon, turmeric, apricot jam, salt
Three teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
Two slices of white bread soaked in milk
125ml flaked almonds
3 bay leaves
250ml milk
2 eggs

Cooking instructions

Fry the onion and garlic and add the mince using the form to separate the large bits. Add all the spices and the carrot together with the lemon juice and mix in.

Add the soaked white bread, making sure to mix it in properly crushing the large parts. Add the almonds and mix through.

Lightly whisk together the milk and eggs. Spoon the mix into a medium sized oven dish and level it with the back of a spoon. Pour the milk and egg mixture over this and on top put the the bay leaves for decoration.

Bake at 180 – 190 for about 40 minutes. The egg topping should be firm and set and a golden brown colour.

Serve the bobotie with rice.

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