A big South African hello from Dubai, where rice is served on top of food and certain hand signal regarded as very rude back home, simply means “wait a minute” or “hold on”. Where people’s driving skills are 70% worse than the Taxi’s back home and phoning someone at 2am in the morning to discuss a business opportunity is normal.
Being away from home in such bizarre surroundings somehow brings out the patriotic spirit in a person, but never before have I experienced it like this.
South African wheel covers and stickers on cars are almost as often spotted as springbok T-shirts or “I love Cape Town” Caps (sold in the corner shop where they don’t even speak English).
Where a boat on Jumairah beach “next to the popular Burj Al Arab has a South African flag blowing in the wind playing “Boere sakkie sakkie” music, is normal. Becoming a more frequent sighting is a South African Flag draped off a balcony in Springs (a rather nice neighborhood in Jebel Ali) We have definitely made our mark here, in fact about 50 000 of us have.
One of the areas us South Africans have greatly influenced are the supermarkets as well.
The local supermarket like Spinneys and Choitrams stock Boerewors and attempt to make biltong as well, (a bit dry for my liking).
If you are lucky enough to get there on the right day and time you might be able to save (or negotiate) the last packet of boerewors from a fellow South African, whom has already stacked 20 packs in his trolley for the freezer. Other South African product that involved in the shelf emptying race are OUMA Rusks, Pronutro, Rooibos tea (a rarity), Mrs Balls Chutney, All Gold and Iwisa PAP.
At night we gather our findings and get together for a Potjiekos or braai, listen to some Afrikaans music and talk about the weather back home.
Here it doesn’t matter whether you come from PE, JHB, Durban or the Platteland, what colour your skin is or whether you support the Sharks or the Cats, we all have one thing in common we miss the boerewors, biltong, braais and the rain down in Africa.
We moved to Melbourne about 2 and a half years ago from Cape Town. We absolutely love living here. There is only a couple of things that we miss here.
Aromat - we got that at the South African Shop in Melbourne
Biltong - also from the South African Shop and Boerewors - a local butcher is making it.
Now the other thing is "skorsies". If you make a potjie it is absolutely wonderful to have them on top with pips and all. The English ruled South Africa and Australia and yet they only took 'Skorsies' to South Africa not Australia. If there is anyone in Australia that knows where we can get a few 'skorsies' or a few seeds, we would love to hear from them.
We live on the outskirts of a small town called Creswick. In South Africa we always wanted to live on a "kleinhoewe"/small holding but just could not do it on accord of the crime situation. Here we get to live our dream. We have sheep, chickens, ducks, dogs, cats, fishes and a guinea pig - oh yes a few possums that eat the dog food that we leave outside at night.
Every time when the parrots come and graze on our lawn, I get that feeling that someone's very "expensive" pet has flown away. Then afterwards I realize that they are only wild birds.
We love living here and still cannot come to terms that the crime situation here is nearly Zero. We don't lock our cars. We only realized after 4 weeks that one of our back doors was open and when my husband leaves last for work, he forgets to close the gate and the front door. When we get back in the evening. we had that weird feeling that our home was burgled, but no, nothing gone.
Here are a lot of South Africans living here. The weather is about the same as in Cape Town and we adapted better that I ever thought. The kids are doing great at school and have lots of friends.
We miss our family but Aussie friends here are so genuine that they feel more like family than friends.
All around our town is a forest with beautiful lakes. There is all over stainless steel barbies (braais) that work with gas or electricity. You can braai all your meat on the gas plates for free and nobody pinches the stainless steel plates for scrap metal.
This is a wonderful country but we do miss our family and South African friends.
Anthony and Sarita
To the team at Biltong Makers
I received my 5kg Biltong maker in Prague on the 2nd January 2006, via family who went to SA and saved me the expensive shipping cost. Needless to say, in exchange for some "pukka" Biltong!
I am already on my third batch and going great guns! Attempts to dry biltong in fan-oven or a food dehydrator did not render the desired results. It somehow tasted to "cooked"! Since my English partner loved the taste of the improvised method we decided to give the "real" thing a try. Now it is "Footie, beer and biltong"!
The American Jerky that is available here is prohibitively expensive and in addition , our novice attempts tasted a lot better. We gave some to our Czech and expat friends to try and received a positive response. Even South Africans living here, were impressed. The result being, we are now in the biltong making business. Our first orders went out today. I suppose we will be greeting the staff at Makro and the spice shop on a first name basis soon.
Finding some of the spices here can be a bit of a drag, especially whole coriander, but between a resourceful "Boere-meisie" en a determined "Brit", we stopped next to a spice truck at the market, enquired whether he had coriander, and voila, a new contact plus a discounted price. We do Coriander, Teriyaki and Spicy, so far. The experiment with Turkey went very well and also caters for the folk that don't like the taste of the beef too much. Hopefully the next step will be "Droe Wors"!
If anyone wants to swap recipes or compare , just let me know. I have visited every website regarding recipes and tips to compile my own taste. I have also found that the strength of salt differs, believe it or not!
P.S. I believe you are thinking about distributors for machines and spices. When you a ready for Europe, please bear me in mind.
Thanks for a great Website and Newsletter. It brings South Africa to Europe for us.
Prague, Czech Republic
Here is a poem sent to us By Nico Botha from Australia
It is a poem by Danette Kotze
Black Label op Paternoster se stoep
Die son verf strepe oor die wilde weste see
Dolos klippe ets die laaste rooi van vandag,
Toeriste ry verby asof die plek te scruffy is,
Maar kom later terug omdat dit die enigste een is.
Agter sing ‘n tafel “Ou Ryperd” op Transkaroo se wysie
Hulle sleep die laaste vers want hy’s al holrug gery
Precious hou verbasend kop, ‘n normale naweek skof,
Sy word getjaaf en getrip, en die ouens is te dronk om te tip.
Oorkant die straat hou klein seuntjies groot krewe vas,
Die lewe uit hul gedroog van rondhang heeldag,
Pryse word afgeskry en ‘n ektra kreefie word ingegooi,
Hulle soek eintlik net eintjies en drankgeld vir pa
Tietiesbaai se volk stap heen en weer verby,
Amper asof die verby stap, die eintlike outing is.
Hulle praat luidrigtig en kyk of ons vir hulle kyk
As hulle naby kom kan jy die aap-twak asems ruik
Die wolwedans skemer word skielik skelm donker,
en almal is genoodsaak om nou harder te praat
Vier kroegvlieë strompel uit die Panty Bar
Na groener gras want hulle is nou moeg vir mekaar.
Die plastiektafels is taai en die glase bly leeg,
‘n ander tafel het al ‘n uur terug oorbeweeg,
Die aanvanklike paatjie is nou heeltemal weg –
As jy wil piepie moet jy deur grillerige mans vleg
Bywoningsgetalle vir ontbyt is maar min
Seemeue bonnel opgewonde in die baai
Die cheap koffie is flou en koud –
Ek voel honger, skuldig en effens benoud.
- Danette Kotze
It is way past Valentine but still worth reading ......
Valentine, oh Valentine,
I smaak you stukkend,
so say you'll be mine
You're my sunny South Africa, my warm evening stars,
You're my lemon-lime airfreshener from O.K. Bazaars,
You're my beaded love-letter, my cool breeze in the night,
You're my Van Riebeek coffee, my Cremora on top,
and my Blitz firelight
You're my Crime-Stop, my Tracker, you're my AZT,
my Mrs Ball's chutney, my pap and rugby,
You're my lambchop, my dewdrop, my partner in crime,
My sweet chillie peppers, my vetkoek sublime
The list is endless and this isn't all,
You're my million buck Lotto win,
my dop and my zol
I smaak you, my poppie, through good time and strife,
cause Babe, you're the All Gold on the
slap chips of life!
Links to the sport pages
Springbok Smit called up for Super 14 duty
Springbok captain John Smit has been called up to join the Sharks Super 14 squad in Australia after prop Brent Moyle suffered an injury.
Stormers coach set to dim bright spark Bolla
Stormers Coach Kobus van der Merwe is to follow a rotation policy by replacing in-form scrumhalf Bolla Conradie with Neil de Kock for the Super 14 match against the Hurricanes, writes Stephen Nell.
Springbok Sevens seeded third for Hong Kong
The Springbok Sevens team are seeded third after the International Rugby Board's announcement of the pool and schedule for the 2006 Hong Kong Sevens.
Bok coach not worried about lack of tries
Although South African teams have struggled to find their way to the opposition tryline in the first three rounds of the Super 14, Springbok coach Jake White believes it is not all doom and gloom.
-Where can you watch rugby on TV?-
Click here to find out where in most countries!
Please help us to help others
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 email@example.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
Now that we are already well into the new year it would be nice to get some contributions for the newsletter from all our readers.
Many people are subscribed to our newsletter and many more are joining 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!
This year we will be concentrating on our Country Boerewors.
It was extremely popular last year (and the 4 years before) that we decided not to diversify.
No funnies like cheese, garlic etc etc. wors. Just good old traditional Boerewors.
The one that you can smell for miles when you have it on the braai!
We will be making our first fresh batches early April.
However (as mentioned in the editorial) we expect a rush toward the end of April.
So, if you want to be sure to have boeries on your first barbecue of the season call or email us now and we'll put you on the list.
Please call us on +32(16)53-9625 or mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Boerewors will be vacuum packed in quantities of about 500 gram. The price is € 8.45 per kg for the time being until we know the exact cost of the vacuum packing.