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Your Heritage Day feast – a proudly South African braai

By September 20, 2016July 25th,

Your Heritage Day feast – a proudly South African braai

September 20, 2016

24 September marks Heritage Day in South Africa – on this day South Africans from around the globe come together, observe and celebrate what it is that makes them South African.

From our respective beliefs and cultures to delicious food, this celebration has also been dubbed ‘braai day’ – since cooking on fire is such a big part of South African culture.

So in honour of our heritage, we’ve put together a South African feast to tantalise your senses and infuse your Heritage Day with saffa flavour.

And while you’re enjoying your time around your braai, why not listen to the official braai day song, featuring Die Heuwels Fantasties, the Soweto Gospel Choir, HHP and JR, called ‘Our Heritage’.

The South African Heritage Day braai feast

Your Heritage Day shisa nyama will include the following dishes:

  1. Mocha-hlama (steamed bread)
  2. Tshidzimba (side dish)
  3. Umngqusho (side dish)
  4. Durban Chakalaka (condiment)
  5. Karoo lamstjops (main)
  6. Amahewu ka phayinaphy (drink)
  7. Koesisters (dessert)

Sesotho mocha-hlama

This delicious steamed bread is a marvellous accompaniment for any braai.


  • 4 cups sorghum
  • 2 cups sifted wheat flour
  • 3 cups boiling water
  • 1 packed prepared yeast or ¼ cup starter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar


  • Mix sorghum with boiling water
  • Cover the mixture and allow to cool
  • Mix in sifted flour
  • Add salt, sugar and yeast or starter
  • Knead the mixture to form a soft dough
  • Leave mix to rise
  • Steam it in a pot for two hours
  • Serve with your meal!

Venda tshidzimba

A Venda staple and moreover rich and nutritious, this side dish combines peanuts, groundnuts and samp and will go down great with your Heritage braai.


  • ½ cup crushed ndhuhu (peanuts)
  • ½ cup cooked ndhuhu
  • 1 cup cooked ponda (ground nuts)
  • 3 cups cooked thuvhule (samp)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • ½ t cumin
  • ½ t all spice
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Pepper


  • Combine all your ingredients together in a pot
  • Bring to a low heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Serve!

Xhosa umngqusho

It was the favourite meal of former president Nelson Mandela, and has delighted many a foreign and local visitor to South African shores. We’re talking about samp and beans – and this Heritage Day we suggest you dish up this yummy treat for your guests.


  • 2 cups samp
  • 2 cups sugar beans
  • Water
  • 2 diced potatoes
  • 2 T Olive oil
  • 2 t curry powder
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 3 T butter


  • Mix the samp and beans and soak overnight in water
  • Drain the water and put the samp and beans in a pot
  • Cover the mix with water and simmer slowly until most of the water has evaporated and the mixture is softened.
  • Sautee the onion in oil until translucent
  • Add curry powder and garlic to onions and cook for a further two minutes
  • Add tomato, vegetable stock, potatoes and ½ cup water
  • Cook until potatoes become soft
  • Add the samp mixture to the potato mix and cook slowly until beans are soft.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Stir in butter.
  • Serve!

Indian Durban chakalaka

Ah, what goes better with our heritage than a big, delectable blob of saffa relish. You can literally eat this with any of your braai food.


  • 3 cubed tomatoes
  • 4 crushed garlic cloves
  • 3 peppers cut into thin strips
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 sliced jalapeno chilli
  • 4 t olive oil
  • 2 T vinegar
  • 2 T hot atchar
  • 2 T tomato sauce
  • 1 t Worcestershire sauces
  • Salt
  • Pepper


  • Combine all ingredients
  • Serve with your food

Afrikaanse Karoo lamstjops

Of course you cannot braai without your meat, which means a few chops on the braai is just what your South African taste buds have been craving.


  • 8 lamb chops
  • 1 T Olive oil
  • 1 T honey
  • 1 T Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ t lemon zest
  • 1 T butter
  • 4 crushed cloves
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • ½ cup chopped fresh rosemary
  • ½ cup chopped fresh thyme
  • Salt
  • Black pepper


  • Heat your grill over the braai
  • Heat honey, Worcestershire sauce, butter, cloves, rosemary, thyme, garlic and lemon zest in a pot
  • Add salt and pepper to taste
  • Mix in olive oil
  • Dip chops in mix and place on grill
  • Brush occasionally with mix as you turn
  • Serve!

Zulu amahewu ka phayinaphy

South Africans are a thirsty bunch, which means you’ll undoubtedly want something tasty to sip on while you enjoy your braai. So why not try this non-alcoholic drink, prepared the Zulu way.


  • 1 cup maize meal
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 1 t salt
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 500 ml pineapple juice


  • Mix the maize meal and 1 cup cold water together
  • Cover remaining water and salt in a pot and boil
  • Stir maize mix into the boiling water
  • Cover once more and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • Stir in the sugar
  • Leave mix to cool
  • Cover and let mix stand overnight in a warm place
  • Stir in the pineapple juice and chill
  • Serve up!

Cape Malay koesisters

Cape Malay koesisters aren’t quite the koeksisters many South Africans are used to – but this scrumptious treat is a perfect way to end off your meal.


  • 1 large potato, cooked and mashed
  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 t ginger powder
  • 1 t cinnamon powder
  • ½ t cardamom powder
  • 1 t aniseed powder
  • ½ t clove powder
  • 10 g instant yeast
  • 2 ½ cups sugar
  • 3 ¾ cups boiling water
  • 2 T melted butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 t salt
  • 3 cups vegetable oil
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 dried and ground naartjie rind


  • Melt butter and ½ cup sugar in hot water
  • Stir in egg
  • Stir in enough milk to make a litre of mix
  • Mix flour, powdered spices, mashed potatoes and yeast in a separate bowl
  • Add the ingredients together
  • Cover with a warm cloth or glad wrap and set aside to rise until doubled in size
  • Divide dough into gold-ball shapes on a lightly oiled surface
  • Set aside to rise once more until they have doubled in size
  • Heat oil in deep saucepan
  • Turn down heat to medium-high
  • Pull koesister balls into rugby ball shapes and lower into the oil
  • Fry both sides until brown for approximately 2 minutes per side
  • Boil 1 cup sugar, 2 cups water, naartjie rind, cardamom pods and cinnamon stick together until it becomes a sticky syrup
  • Remove cardamom pods and cinnamon stick
  • Add koesisters into the syrup one at a time and cook for a minute while turning all the time
  • Put koesisters on a serving dish and sprinkle with desiccated coconut
  • Serve!

There you have it! We hope these recipes will bring South Africa home to you wherever you are in the world and that you can showcase your unique heritage to your neighbours and friends. Happy Heritage Day from everyone at!

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