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The Biltongmakers.Com Newsletter
November 2005

You are receiving this newsletter because you have previously placed an order with Biltongmakers or made an enquiry about Biltong, Boerewors or Potjie Pots or someone has submitted your name to us thinking that you might be interested.
If you do not wish to receive this newsletter you may unsubscribe at the bottom where you will find an automatic email link. Just click on that and send. Your name will then be permanently deleted from our database.

If you, your family or your friends want to subscribe to the newsletter please click on this link.
Yes, please subscribe me to your monthly Newsletter!


In this Newsletter

What did you drag across the world?

From the editor

Keerbergen
Belgium
November 2, 2005

One of the most incredible things you experience when you live in Europe is how the different seasons are so absolutely defined.
Autumn 2005 Winter is REALLY winter here complete with the snow and ice and cold and, of course, the nice warm homes, open log fires and long cozy evenings.

When it is spring you just FEEL and SEE nature coming alive again in an almost unbelievable way. It is as if everything wakes up from a long, long sleep and almost overnight you start seeing the trees turning green and flowers blossoming.

A good summer can give us temperatures of 35C or more with looooong warm evenings sitting outside until the sun goes down at 10:30 or so.

And then there is the autumn.....!

That's where we have been for the past couple of months or so.

Autumn 2005 in our garden Autumn in the northern hemisphere is a spectacle of colours almost too beautiful to behold. You can see and smell it is autumn and feel it! The gardens are full of toadstools in all kind of colours. The one you see here was one of the many in our front garden. This is a "real" one. One under which you will find little elves and "kaboutertjes" at night!

Here in Belgium we have had the most incredible autumn yet with temperatures averaging 20-25C. Even now, as I am sitting here it is still 19 degrees outside with a cool breeze blowing the spent leaves from their high perches on the trees outside slowly making their way to the ground where I (#$&*~!) have to spend hours blowing them onto heaps and then into the undergrowth.

But the shedding of the leaves is preceded by a spectacular colour show. Formerly green leaves turn to brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and red.

Many millions of tons of leaves have to be cleared every year not only in gardens but also of the roads by huge trucks fitted with large "vacuum cleaners"

The railways spend millions on keeping the tracks clear because the leaves leave a deposit on the tracks, which turns them into a virtual skating ring. Trains can't drive because the wheels just slip along the rails.

Autumn is a time where most train commuters are always late for work.

I love autumn. Especially this year with its incredible temperatures and .. well, what can I say?

Have a look at some of the pictures on this page and click on the ones on the right to see them in their true format. But remember, no picture could ever do any justice whatsoever to seeing it in real life.



So with October gone and November on our doorstep we are moving closer to Christmas (again!). How time flies. It must be the hectic lives we lead. Sometimes I think if it's all really worth it or if we should just disappear to some little remote corner of this earth where there are no telephones, TV's, newspapers and computers. Just living of the land and appreciate life as it should be perhaps.

But, for the time being we are stuck in the present.

So, on this philosophical note I must leave you.

Till next month.

Take care,

Lo


Food for thought

Experience life

You put a lot of energy and effort into living. So on a regular basis, take time to fully experience your life and the world in which you live.

Spend some time that has no purpose other than to take in all the richness of which you're a part. Let go, for a while, of the need to analyze, to criticize, to judge and react.

Allow your thoughts to be still. Feel the wonder, the goodness, the beauty of simply being, and knowing that you are.

Experience life, not in order to gain any advantage or to impress someone. Experience life because the depth of its richness has no limit.

The more fully you experience and appreciate life, the more you'll find yourself needing less and having more. Experience life, and you'll clearly see how truly rich you already are.

Life is a gift so precious that it has no equal.

Experience life, and give that gift to yourself and others.

Ralph Marston


Story of the month

Potjiekos

Cool!!
The following article was sent to us by Malcolm from South Africa (where exactly we don't know). We are publishing the article in Afrikaans-We don't have too much of that!

n Reeks artikels oor kos sal nie volledig wees sonder om oor ons nasionale erfenis, potjiekos, te praat nie. Van die mense waarmee ek gepraat het voor ek hier kom sit het, het my op die vraag "Waar kom Potjie" vandaan geantwoord: van die Voortrekkers. Ek moet erken ek het ook nogal so gedink. Tot my verbasing is dit nie.

Die ontstaan van die hutspot of potjie gaan sover terug as 1573. Op 15 Oktober 1573 het die Spanjaarde die Nederlandse stad Leiden beler. Maar die Nederlanders was nie bekommerd gewees nie want hulle het genoeg kos in die stad gehad. Op 21 Maart 1574 los die Spanjaarde Leiden soos n warm patat. Die mense was verheug.

Maar ewe skielik op die 25ste Mei 1574 beler die Spanjaarde weer Leiden. Dit is net hier waar die moeilikheid begin. Die mense het nog nie tyd gehad om kos bymekaar te maak nie en niemand kon in of uit die stad gaan nie. Die kos was maar skraps. Gelukkig het die mense begin om gemeenskapsetes te maak. Almal het maar stukkie kos aangedra van wat hulle gehad het. Al hierdie flentertjies en skraapsels is in een pot gegooi en gekook. So het hulle maar elke dag saam geet.

Daar is verder min bekend oor die hutspot en hoe hy begin het om deur Europa te trek. Elke jaar word die hutspot gemaak op die dag wanneer die beleg van Leiden beindig is. Die mense het duidelik nie net die hutspot bly maak op die vakansiedag nie. Van Nederland het die hutspot Belgi, Frankryk en Engeland toe gegaan.

Natuurlik op 6 April 1652 het Jan van Riebeeck so n paar hutspotte aan boord van sy skepe gehad. As mens daaraan dink is die potte net reg gewees om mee te kook in so n wilde ongerepte land. Maar dit is nie al manier wat die potte hier in die suiderpunt van Afrika geland het nie. Die ontdekkingsreisigers het die swart potte by hulle gehad om hulle kos in te maak. Op een of ander manier het hulle seker maar die potte geruil vir gunste en gawes by die plaaslike bevolking.

The biggest Potjie Pot in the world! Die plaaslike bevolking het gou gesien dat die swart ysterpotte baie beter kook en hanteer as die gewonne kleipotte wat hulle gebruik het. En so het die potjie vol pap ook sy plek gekry by die swart bevolking, en met hulle migrasie af na die suidpunt toe het die pot ook saamgekom.

In Kaapstad in die vroe jare het die pot behoorlik gekook. Eers het die mense net kos daarin gaargemaak. Verder het hulle agtergekom dat hulle die potjie ook as n oond gebruik en stukke vleis daarin gaarmaak, maar die einde was dit niet, want hulle het ook agtergekom dat mens ook brood in die pot kan bak. Maar met al die skepe met hulle vreemde speserye en geure het die potjie ook begin om meer geurig en smaaklik te raak.

Natuurlik was hierdie 3 in een pot 'n natuurlike keuse toe die Voortrekkers die lang pad moes aandurf noorde toe. Die voordeel van die potjies is dat jy nie vreeslik baie nodig het om hom aan die gang te kry nie. n Klein vuurtjie en 'n paar stukke hout en siedaar gaan die pot aan die kook. Die ander voordeel is ook dat as mens die potjie stadig kook kan taai vleis lekker sag word. n Ander voordeel, ook vir die Voortrekkers, is dat die aand as jy klaar geet het kan jy die volgende dag net jou potjie optel en aan die wa haak en daar gaan jy.

Hier in die Sewentigerjare het ons moderne wesens die potjie in al sy glorie laat herleef. Mense het begin agterkom dat as jy potjie maak dat daar ekstra paar uur lekker kuier mee gepaard gaan. Baie potjiekos-kompetisies is gehou en daar is tot n potjiegilde in Pretoria.

Die potjie se grootte word bepaal deur die hoeveelheid water wat hy kan neem. n No 1 pot neem 2 Quarts water en n no 3 pot 8 Quarts water.

Deesdae is omtrent elke mens n potjie kenner. Elkeen het maar sy gunsteling manier en gereg wat hy as sy eie beskou. Miskien moet ons dankie aan die Spanjaarde s vir die beleg van Leiden. As dit nie vir daardie beleg was nie sou ons kultuur beslis armer gewees het.


What did you drag accross the world?

All those things we took with us....

Did we not want to take everything, thinking that if we got rid of something we might not be able to replace it wherever we went to?
Then, once on "the other side", we either realized how lucky we were to have taken all those "special" things or how stupid it really was.

I for one remember that is was very difficult to part with all the things we had gathered over so many years.

But some of the things .......really!!

I can just think of the SEVEN braais we took! There was our Cadac gas braai (with every conceivable attachment!), our Weber, spitbraai, large cast iron braai, another (smaller) Weber, our gas bottle with the large cast iron top......just to mention some!
All we have used in the end has been perhaps one or two of them. The rest stands in the garage collecting dust!
And those are just some of the many things we could have left behind.

In this part of our newsletter we are inviting you to write in telling us what YOU took with you when you left.
These may be things you really need right now or things that you could have left behind and were really totally unnecessary to have taken along.

We will have a small Competition to see who writes in with the most unusual item that they dragged with them across the world!

We will be running this competition until the end of the year so submit your entries as soon as possible.

The person with the most unusual item (and we will want to see a picture of it!) will get one of Rockey's 5kg Home Biltong Makers!

So, here we go!



This one is from Nico Botha in Australia
We bought a very old antique French bed, in France, then packed it all up moved with it to South Africa, and that with my inheritance furniture is now here in Australia.
I have three braai dromme, a smoker, a 4x4 Camper Trailer,about 20 fishing rods from RSA a few cast nets, enough ander kakkas for camping and even our Venter Trailer the 6 ft Venter Camel here in Australia!
If I have to list all Skippy's kakkas, the newsletter will be just a bit too small to list everything!



From Lorraine and Derek Austin in Brisbane
We emigrated and wondered what to take with us to Brisbane Australia, so we took everything with us, plus two new fridge/freezers.
When we got here, one fridge packed up, so we thought we would make it into a tool cabinet, and it even has a built in lock so when the second fridge packed up just at the end of last year, we did the same with it.
Now in the shed we have two lovely KIC fridges that no longer work but are our two lock up tool cabinets. The neighbour asked us one day why we have a fridge in the shed so we joked with him and told him to keep the beers cold. So that's what happens to lockable fridges from South Africa!



From Paddy Johnson in Australia
Great newsletter !!!
I have been in Aussie for 8 yrs. now and whilst unpacking an old tool box the other day came across this most unusual " BRINGALONG".
Just in case not everybody knows, this "deadly" piece of weaponry is a pair of BIDIZZOS!
They are for castrating young bulls and turning them into oxen.
My partner (Aussie-City girl) thinks that this little operation she wants to perform comes a little too late. I have twin sons (22 year olds).
They came for the ride as we stopped farming in South Africa 33 yrs ago. I am 50 now and my Dad had these before I was born. I guess they are just part of the family.



From Kerry Booysen-Finch in Holland
The strangest thing I "HAD TO" bring with when we left SA in 1999 (and I will be surprised if anyone has anything stranger) is approximately 1 kg of dried rose petals which came from the garden of the first home we ever owned.
I had them in a bowl on the coffee table in SA for 6 years before leaving and now they proudly (and a little faded) sit in the same bowl on a different coffee table in The Netherlands (and NO I am not smoking some good stuff)!!
Let's see if anyone can beat that!!



From Tanja Köhn in Dushanbe, Tajikistan
As for the strangest item that we took: Bruce is absolutely boat mad and had started building boats in Cape Town. He always collected bits and bobs for boats for future use, so in our driveway in Hout Bay we had this massive 7 m square wooden mast lying around.
He promised me to get rid of it before the movers would arrive, but when they stood in the door and he looked at the container, he decided to take it along, because it fitted in!
I was not amused, and I am still not - it is now lying around in our driveway of the little oriental townhouse we are renting here in Dushanbe!
Tajikistan is an inland country with no sailing boats in a 500 km radius! - I already considered cutting it up and using it as braai wood... Maybe we should put it up as a flagpole though and fly the South African flag high above the roofs of Dushanbe!



From John and Mel Berry from Loxahatchee, Florida, USA
We first moved from Johannesburg to Virginia 3 years ago before moving down to Florida at the beginning of this year.
We have some items that have made it all the way to Loxahatchee with us. We used to go off-road in our 4x4 in SA, so guess what came with us?
The hi-rise jack!
I'm not quite sure what John plans to do with it and it lives with our gardening tools, our gun safe, all our "Get Away" magazines and of course our Staffie dog Angel.



From Jacki Martin in New Hampshire in the US of A
I was reading your newsletter from last month and saw the section about the strangest things moved from SA.
My parents brought the top tier of their wedding cake. They had kept it for 20 years and were determined to have a piece on their anniversary!
Well, after dousing it with brandy, the cake was just short of cement and they managed a small bite ...... but the rest was history!

I love the newsletter - thanks for the great stories!!



From Gavin van Heusden in Durban, South Africa
After eight years of living in the UK it was time to return home to South Africa. Leaving as a bachelor in 1997 I was returning a married man and my wonderful wife was expecting at the time!! This is where the plant in my life (Henry) comes into the story.
Before meeting my wife to be (April 1999) I moved to Windsor, it was late 1997 and there on the dining room table was this rather sickly plant. After adopting it and nursing it back to health it followed me from house to house, which included 3 moves over 7 years. Now this is one hardy little plant which has gone for 4 weeks at a time without water (on a number of occasions) and by all means should have gone back to dust a good few times.

After deciding it was time we go back to our roots in South Africa the BIG MOVE got under way in November 2004. After everything was moved and all our suitcases for the last two weeks stay were packed and booted I was walking out the door for the final time with Henry in my arms. He was to be given to my cousin for safe keeping. This I believe was preoccupying me, and low and behold my jacket got caught on the door handle as I was walking through. I stumbled, found the lip of the step, slipped and launched into the airtrying to get my balance meant letting go! Watching the pot tumble through the air in slow motion was sickening but at the same time it felt like a fitting end for my plant.

One smashed pot later, and a plant that had snapped at the root system and leaf system I was cleaning up the mess before the new owners moved in. I actually found a few leaves still joined together and thought I would drop them in some water and see what happens. Well, what did I expect, after a few days there were a few roots off the bottom of the leaves. On the day of leaving we wrapped him in wet cotton wool and stuffed him into my golf bag. Expectations of survival were highly based on past performance and as expected we now have Henry on our balcony looking healthier than ever before.

I dragged a doomed plant, which I have known longer than my wife all the way across the world!!



Come on all you SAers out there you still have till the end of this year to submit your entries!




Our Home Biltong Makers

Some comments from our GuestMap entries

Sunsets and biltong on the Mediterranean! What could be better! Almost like home!

Johan
Kas, Turkey



My first attempt at Boerewors a great success! Now can you do something about the weather?

Wally Shave
Hertford, England



Ek moet defnetief vir my een van daardie Biltongmakers aanskaf, my maag maak al sulke draaie as ek net daaraan dink!
Hou die blinkkant bo!

Jan van Niekerk
Surrey, British Columbia, Canada



It's just too good to be true. Finally my own homemade biltong!

Sean Kern
Lohmar, Germany



Love making my own Biltong here in Japan. I don't even want to share it with my wife!!

Uli
Yokohama, Japan




You too could be making your own Biltong in a very short space of time.
Have a look at our Home Biltong Makers and see how easy it is!!

You can have a look at the Biltong Buddy
here.
Details on Rockey's machine can be found by clicking on this link.



IMPORTANT NOTICE!!

Our factory has informed us that a small batch of Biltong Buddies was supplied with a round 40 watt golf ball shaped globe. This only applies for Biltong Buddies shipped between 1-7-2005 and 30-09-2005.
When you receive your Biltong Buddy please check the globe and if it is a round golf ball shaped globe please DO NOT USE IT!
Overseas users please use a 25 watt candle shaped globe only. South African users can use a 40 watt candle shaped globe if they cannot find a 25 watt type.
Any other type of globe will result in the burning of certain parts of the Biltong Buddy.

We apologize for this inconvenience.


This month's special offer

The BILTONG BUDDY Home Biltong maker at a give-away price!

During November you will be able to get the incredible BILTONG BUDDY Home Biltong Maker at only R 565.00.
That is more than R 150.00 below the normal retail price!
Make use of this opportunity because we expect a price increase from the factory before the end of the year.
As an added bonus we will give you a free packet of one of the famous NICE 'n SPICY Spice packets complete with recipe with every order placed for one of our Home Biltong Makers.

Click
here to go to our on-line shop.




Tip of the month

What to take and what not?

The following is a tip we recieved from Bruce Prescott in Johannesburg. It is actually a tip to the editor and a very good one at that!

Bruce writes:

Just a suggestion - in your newsletter you have a section where you ask subscribers to list odd/strange items that they took with them when they emigrated from SA.
What would be really useful for those folks who are leaving or planning to leave SA, for whatever reason, is some recommendations from those who have been living overseas for a while what they should or should not have taken with them.
There are the obvious items such as TVs and electrical appliances which are not compatible with the US and Canadian TV and electrical supply (NTSC vs PAL, 110V 60Hz vs 220V 50Hz, etc).

With the benefit of hindsight, what would they have sold and what would they have bought before leaving SA?



Let's see if between all of us we can come up with a list (for different countries perhaps?) of tips what to take and what not to take?

Please send your tips to the editor at the
webmaster@biltongmakers.com.



We heard that one can call South Africa for only 1 cent per minute from Europe. Apparently you must dial the prefix 003001439 and then the normal number.



For those people who have problems with fruitflies (those nasty very small creatures) while making Biltong in one of our biltong makers, just use a piece of very fine netting (much like net curtaining) to drape over the machine.



It was brought to our notice that some people try to use a higher wattage and different shape globe than supplied with the Biltong Makers. They do this to try and decrease the drying time. Not only does this not work but it it also dangerous!
Firstly, a higher wattage light will dry the meat too quick resulting in a hard outer crust and a soft inside. And.....a higher wattage globe will burn certain of the components in the machines. ONLY USE a candle shaped 25 watt globe for the Biltong Buddy and a 40 watt candle shaped globe for Rockey's 5kg machine.
If you can't get a 25 watt candle shaped globe for the Buddy you can use a 40 watt but the 25 watt globe is normally sufficient.


Questions and Answers

Here is our regular section on the many questions we receive from our readers all over the world.
If we have not given an answer and you can help these people could you please mail them?
(Please copy us in on your mails @
info@biltongmakers.com
so we can help other people who might have the same questions in the future)



QUESTION

After realizing from sad experience that quite often fresh steaks from supermarkets are not very well cured (or aged) and may be quite tough, I was wondering if your readers had any thoughts on how to improve the overall tenderness of meat before braaing or hot frying.
Beating the meat to bits with a tenderising hammer is not an option!
We prefer our steaks rare to medium-rare so the cooking process should have very little effect on the eventual tenderness when its eaten.

Vacuum packing perhaps?
Marinading is probably one way to go but often changes the original meat flavour and may not please everyone.

All the best, wherever you may be.

Rob Fowler
Midrand, South Africa
robf@iafrica.com



QUESTION

What is the difference between Jerky and Biltong except, perhaps, from the spices and the drying process.

Eli Levy
England
getresults@jl-consulting.co.uk


Stoep Talk

Stoep Talk

Step onto stoep for smells and sounds of home
By James Clarke

In September I mentioned how I'd like to make a record of South African sounds to send to South Africans who've emigrated - sounds that would make them want to come home.

I received an enormous response, half from readers overseas who read this column on the Internet.

Some responses were quite sad.

In that column, I mentioned the "cheerful morning song of the black-eyed bulbul". This prompted Neville Clarke (no relation) in Sydney, Australia, to remind me of a verse he'd kept from Stoep Talk many years ago - Song for Non-Morning People:

I woke early one morning,
The earth lay cool and still
When suddenly a tiny bird
Perched on my window sill.
He sang a song so lovely
So carefree and so gay,
That slowly all my troubles
Began to slip away.
He sang of far-off places
Of laughter and of fun,
It seemed his very trilling,
Brought up the morning sun.
I stirred beneath the covers
Crept slowly out of bed,
And quickly shut the window
And crushed his %$&#** head.


Glenda Jones sent the column to her sister, Nola Doddemeade whom, I gather, lives somewhere overseas. She responded by suggesting I try to synthesise some typical South African smells.

She listed jasmine at dusk; boerewors on a braai; the bush just before it rains; the bush just after it has rained; vetkoek frying; a veld fire; mealie porridge cooking on a wood fire; a pool dosed with HTH; and Durban curry.

Gwendoline, who has lived in Windsor, England, for the past few years, wrote: "I loved the column. And yes, it makes me want to be back putting up with violent crime and the soaring cost of living.

"Your column is the one place I still find that lifts my spirits. Since I have moved to the UK I have faithfully read it on IOL. I'd say you too are a wonderful sound of SA."

This, of course, made my day even if it did cause Threnody to roll her eyes into the back of her head so they looked like a pair of picnic eggs.

Carl de Kock of "Mission, TX" in Texas wrote: "I am an ex-South African boertjie now calling Texas my home. Your article did indeed bring back many great memories. The question is: are the more modern sounds becoming traditional - the sound of the security gate locking when you lock yourself into your home; the sound of gunshots at night?

"Depressing stuff. Regardless, South Africa is still a country with the potential of a great future. Keep your writings coming. We avidly read your column."

A farmer's wife in Queensland, Australia wrote a long letter to say the column made her homesick but then she recalled how her family were terrorised on their farm in Mpumalanga and how happy her husband is today doing farm work that, back home, took several hands to do, badly.


New words

  • Blamestorming - Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was missed or a project failed, and who is to blame.
  • Assmosis - The process by which people seem to absorb success and advancement by sucking up to the boss rather than by working hard.
  • Cube farm - Office filled with cubicles.
  • Prairie dogging - When someone yells or drops something loudly in a cube farm, and people's heads pop up over the walls to see what's going on.
  • Percussive maintenance - The fine art of whacking the hell out of an electronic device to get it to work again.
  • Monkey bath - A bath so hot that when lowering yourself in you go: "Oo! Oo! Ho! Aa! Aa! Aa!"


Recipe corner

Pork Sausages

This one is from Japie de Jager from Walvisbay in Namibia

I would like to share this recipe with all the "BBQ" Braai fans out there.

Ingredients
  • 6.5kg pork with sufficient fat on it
  • 9.4gr fine salt
  • 1/4 cup crushed dried corriander seeds
  • 1/2 dessert spoon fine cloves
  • 1 dessert spoon fine black pepper
  • 1/2 cup black vinegar
Method
  • Cut the meat and fat into cubes of say 4x4cm and spread open on a flat area
  • Pour the vinegar evenly over the meat and mix well
  • Pour all the other dry ingredients over the meat and mix well again
  • Put the meat in a big enough bowl and let it idle for at least 30 minutes and mix again
  • Mince the meat but the grid should not be too fine otherwise you will end up with "viennas"
  • After the mincing is done you fill the meat into a medium size casing (30-34 gauge)
Very delicious for an outside braai or to fry in a pan.

Enjoy !

Japie de Jager
Walvisbay, Namibia
jdejager@walvisbaycc.org.na



The following recipe is another one from Lorraine Austin from Brisbane in Australia. It is Mushroom month there so let's make a ..........

Mushroom Mince Dish

Ingredients
  • 1 punnet of sliced button mushrooms
  • 1 large chopped onion
  • 500g lean mince
  • 1 chopped tomato
  • A little olive oil
  • 1 small tub fresh cream
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • Seasoning to taste
  • 1 beef oxo cube dissolved in 1/4 cup boiling water
  • Some eggs- first see how many people are eating, then break the eggs on top of mushrooms
Method
  • Fry the sliced mushrooms in a little olive oil with some seasoning until soft, add the tub of fresh cream, simmer, and set aside
  • In a small saucepan combine the mince, olive oil, onion, tomato and seasoning and cook until done, adding a little water, not too much
  • Add the the oxo cube and the water
  • When it is done, spread the mince into a medium size rectangular pyrex dish and add the mushroom sauce
  • Break the raw eggs on top, according to how many people are eating, and sprinkle with grated cheese
  • Put into a moderate oven, at 180 C, and leave until done
Serve with a green salad and garlic bread.

Lorraine Austin
Brisbane Australia



Around the World

Bits and Bobs from people around the world

This from Jeanette Swanepoel in Venezuela

Moenie kla nie

However interesting it is to live in a foreign country, I'm always grateful to return to the RSA, knowing there are bigger problems around than what we complain of in SA.
As my husband used to say: Ons kla met die witbrood onder die arm.

Jeanette Swanepoel
Caracas, Venezuela
jswanepoel@cantv.net



This mail was received from Pat and Des Thomsen in South Africa

Biltong is not rotten meat!

Someone sent me your website link which I find very interesting because I am a biltong fanatic who enjoys making our own Biltong .... naturally, without the industrial spices that all the butcheries in South Africa use.
Every year, for many years, my wife and I have made Biltong with venison from our own Game Farm. I confess that we have not tried any of your recipes yet but they look excellent! (apart from the sugar).

I have a belief in making food and Biltong with natural spices and ingredients, such as our forefathers used to do, and I applaud your approach in publishing recipes using natural spices etc. I also am delighted that the Biltong culture is being exported and embraced in countries in Europe and America.
I must admit up front that beef is the best meat to use for Biltong, as long as it is derived from a special breed called Afrikander cattle. This is because the meat of these animals is flavoured with the Bushveld vegetation which imparts a unique flavour to the meat.
These animals are unique to South Africa having been bred over years to exist in the harsh conditions of the African Bushveld.

I would encourage you to dispel some of the myths that some uninformed and poorly educated people outside of South Africa believe.
Biltong is not rotten meat!! It is cured, air dried and absolutely safe to enjoy.
Please carry on with your promotion of Biltong as it is a Tradition that must not be allowed to expire.

Best wishes from
Pat and Des Thomsen
South Africa
pat.thomsen@worldonline.co.za



Something to smile about

Doctor's orders!

We don't know what doctor wrote this but we like him!!

Health question and answer session

Q: Doctor, I've heard that cardiovascular exercise can prolong life; is this true?

A: Your heart is only good for so many beats, and that's it... don't waste them on exercise. Everything wears out eventually. Speeding up your heart will not make you live longer; that's like saying you can extend the life of your car by driving it faster. Want to live longer? Take a nap.

Q: Should I cut down on meat and eat more fruits and vegetables?

A: You must grasp logistical efficiencies. What does a cow eat? Hay and corn. And what are these? Vegetables. So a steak is nothing more than an efficient mechanism of delivering vegetables to your system. Need grain? Eat chicken. Beef is also a good source of field grass (green leafy vegetable). And a pork chop can give you 100% of your recommended daily allowance of vegetable products.

Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?

A: No, not at all. Wine is made from fruit. Brandy is distilled wine, that means they take the water out of the fruity bit so you get even more of the goodness that way. Beer is also made out of grain. Bottoms up!

Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?

A: Well, if you have a body and you have fat, your ratio is one to one. If you have two bodies, your ratio is two to one, etc.

Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?

A: Can't think of a single one, sorry. My philosophy is: No Pain...Good!

Q: Aren't fried foods bad for you?

A: YOU'RE NOT LISTENING!!!. Foods are fried these days in vegetable oil. In fact, they're permeated in it. How could getting more vegetables be bad for you?

Q: Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?

A: Definitely not! When you exercise a muscle, it gets bigger. You should only be doing sit-ups if you want a bigger stomach.

Q: Is chocolate bad for me?

A: Are you crazy? HELLO . Cocoa beans! Another vegetable!!! It's the best feel-good food around!

Q: Is swimming good for your figure?

A: If swimming is good for your figure, explain whales to me.

Q: Is getting in-shape important for my lifestyle?

A: Hey! 'Round' is a shape!

Well, I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.
And remember: "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and screaming "WOO HOO, What a Ride!"



Relations

An elderly couple was sitting together, watching their favorite Saturday night TV program.
During one of those commercial breaks, the husband asked his wife:
"Whatever happened to our sexual relations?"
After a long thoughtful silence, the wife, during the next commercial break, replied:
"You know, I don't really know -- I don't even think we got a Christmas card from them this year."



For sale

FOR SALE BY OWNER
Complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica
45 volumes
Excellent condition
$1,000.00 or best offer
No longer needed
Got married last weekend
Wife knows everything


Sport talk

Links to the sport pages

Jake takes a flyhalf gamble
Springbok coach Jake White's decision to take only one specialist flyhalf in Andre Pretorius on tour to Argentina and Europe has raised concerns.
Full Story


Brave cricket pays off
"Brave cricket" and "taking things on" seem to be the new buzzwords in the Proteas camp after their win in the first one-day International against New Zealand in Bloemfontein.
Full Story...


Top men in line for place on SA Rugby board
Three prominent businessmen and rugby enthusiasts are on the shortlist to replace Theunie Lategan as independent director on the board of South African Rugby.
Full Story...


Now tearful Os has won them all
For a man like Os du Randt, who does not have many playing days left, it was also very emotional. Before Saturday, the Bok prop had won everything in rugby except the Currie Cup.
Full story...



The monthly competition

The winner of the October Competition!

The winner of the October competition is:
Mrs Isa Kahn from Mevasseret Zion in Israel.
Congratulations to you Isa!
Your MP3 Player complete with all accessories will be mailed to you shortly. We have even fitted the batteries for you and recorded a couple of songs so you can try it out the minute you receive it.



Remember the following:
  • The monthly draw or competition is totally free to everyone at the moment.
  • You can enter as many times as you like.
  • You can only enter via the Competition link on our home page or by clicking here
  • All prizes are sent to the winners free of charge.


  • The prize for the November Competition
    The prize for this competition is a digital camera so small that you can fit it in your top pocket like a pen. The camera comes complete with stand, software CD and USB interface cable.

    Click here to see a picture of it on the competition page!

    To enter the competition all you have to do is to visit our home page at www.biltongmakers.com and click on one of the two competition links.
    The winners of our competitions are notified by email.

    Some of the other prizes for the year
  • Biltongmakers
  • Biltong spices
  • Boerewors spices
  • Braai tool sets
  • Potjie Pots
  • Barbecues
  • Digital cameras
  • Cadac Skottel Braais and .......... much, much more!!!


  • So, don't wait!

    You can enter right now by clicking on the competition link on our home page.


    A free Biltong Maker?

    Want something for nothing?

    As a South African orientated web site we are constantly looking to contact more and more South Africans across the world.
    Not only to tell them about how they can make their own Biltong but also to give them a chance to share their stories with other South Africans the world over.

    So, here is your chance to help us.

    If you know about a South African family or friend living near you or perhaps somewhere far away, why not tell them about us and then us about them.
    Perhaps you can send us their email address so that we can mail them a copy of this newsletter.
    If they like it they can stay on the mailing list, if not they can just let us know and we will remove them from the list.

    If the response we receive is large enough and, directly due to your efforts people place orders with us, you could be rewarded by receiving one of our products totally free of charge.

    What an easy way to perhaps get your own Home Biltong Maker without having to pay a cent for it!

    You can mail us at
    info@biltongmakers.com

    During the last month many people went to the trouble once again of submitting their friend's and family's names and we would like to thank all!


    Let's hear from you too!!

    Why not write to us

    It is almost Christmas again and it would be nice to get some contributions for the December newsletter from all our readers.

    Many people are subscribing to this newsletter every day. Mostly they do so because they enjoy reading it and like to hear from people in other parts of the world.

    They would love to hear from you too!!

    Why not put pen to paper (or fingers to the keyboard!), and tell us about anything interesting. About life in your part of the world, what you do and how you live. Perhaps something that happened to you.
    You might have a nice recipe to part with or perhaps a question to ask?

    Perhaps you have some advice to give?
    You never know how you could help somebody else with your own hints and tips.

    Of course it does not have to be about Biltong or food. Anything that is of interest is welcome!

    Share it with other people around the world!



    Boerewors in the Benelux

    Boerewors

    It is autumn in our part of the world and not many people will be going outside for a braai anymore.

    But, that does not mean that you cannot have Boerewors rolls any longer!Boeries on the braai! Boerie rolls are great for indoor parties and even as a meal!

    We will be making our last batches for the year shortly and suggest that you place your orders for the winter timely to avoid disappointment.

    You can contact us on +32 (16) 53.96.25 or mail us at Boerewors-Benelux.

    The price is 7.50 per kg


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    Potjiekos

    Click to see me biggerPotjiekos ...... a fun way to entertain!

    The Potjiekos season is over for this year. No more nice sunny days to stand around the Potjie, beer in hand just enjoying yourself.
    But, you are probably already making plans for the spring and next summer. If so, keep us in mind for our famous "Potjiekos". We do this for a minimum of 50 and up to 100 people.

    We make our "Potjie" in our size 25 Pot (see left) and you can have a choice between Beef, Chicken and Lamb.

    The Chicken "Potjie" is the most popular because it is a really inexpensive way to entertain.
    A Chicken "Potjie" costs only 6.50 per head and this includes everything from the "Potjie" itself to the plates and eating utensils.
    For an extra 2.00 we even make the Pap!

    To book please give us a call on +32 (16) 53.96.25

    (Please note that our "Potjiekos" can only be done outside because we cook on gas or coals!)

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    Lamb on the Spit

    Lamb on the spit ....... something special!

    As with the Potjiekos our Lamb-on-the-Spit is also somthing of the past this year (unless you want one in the snow!).
    But keep it in mind for next year

    Lamb on the spit is a way of entertaining as only known by very few mainly because it is thought to be very expensive.

    Click to see me big! Not so!
    We will do a lamb on the Spit for parties of a minimum of 30 and a maximum of 40 people for just 15.00 and 12.00 a head respectively.

    Together with the lamb we will treat you to a big pot of curried potatoes as well as a choice between a pasta salad or three-bean salad.
    Bread rolls are included as well with garlic bread as an optional extra.
    For venues more than 50km from our home base in Keerbergen there is a small charge of 25c per km.

    Booking early is essential and you can do so on
    +32 (16) 53.96.25

    -May and June 2006 are almost booked out-

    (As with our "Potjiekos" a Lamb on the Spit can only be done outside because we cook on coals!)

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    Previous issues of our Newsletter

    You can click on the links below to view some of the previous issues of our newsletter.
    November 2004
    December 2004
    January 2005
    February 2005
    March 2005
    April 2005
    May 2005
    June 2005
    July 2005
    August 2005
    September 2005
    October 2005
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