October 2006


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The Biltongmakers.Com Newsletter
October 2006
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.
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In this Newsletter



From the editor
October 8, 2006
Hello everybody, welcome back!

It is Sunday afternoon and it is nice and quiet. Children are playing hopscotch in the street and one of them had even brought a mini-trampoline out. The little boy from three houses away is riding his pedal car up and down the road towing his friend in a little trailer.

They are busy collecting chestnuts from the side of the road.

There is only one word for it …. tranquil!

It’s nice to have a weekend “off”. It has been busy and we needed a rest.

This weekend is voting day for the Belgians. Municipal voting that is. When I went to the shops earlier I found the roads in chaos. The “terrasjes” and cafe’s (pubs) are chock-and-block and there are people everywhere.

In Belgium they have a law that says that everybody has to vote. Not staying away here!

Our neighbours are members of “Het Vlaams Belang”. A little like the old AWB in South Africa. This party wants to keep Belgium “clean” of foreigners and immigrants.

Every time it gets to voting they (the neighbours) put up this wooden structure with posters on it. Many mornings the posters have been torn down and notes pasted in their place saying things like “Where would Belgium be without immigrants?”

One morning we actually found the whole wooden structure in the road. Someone must have hooked it on their towbar and pulled it out of the ground!

Nothing changes, does it?

It’s starting to get a little chillier, especially in the mornings when June leaves for work at around 6 o’clock. The only reason she leaves so early is that she misses all the traffic into Brussels and she can leave at 4 in the afternoon, missing it again. A normal (little traffic trip) takes her about 40 minutes. Leaving at 8 in the morning means sitting in traffic for an hour and a half, at least.

But I digress……..

It IS getting colder and soon the autumn with its kaleidoscope of colours will be upon us. I will try to take some really nice pictures this year and show you some.

September was a very good month weather wise. It was like having high summer again. Every weekend was “Braaing weather” and needles to say that is exactly what we did.

Tony and Catherine came around a couple of Saturdays ago with the children and stayed over. It was nice to relax a bit and at least they could have a drink for a change not having to drive all the way back to Den Haag in Holland!

It was good to taste some nice barbecued meat and have some pap and saus! One of the weekends when we had friends around we had some Irish steak. I might have mentioned this before but the rib-eye of the Irish beast is the best beef I have ever had the pleasure to eat.

And that includes South African beef!


After my encounter with the 18 wheeler on August 30th my car was written off by the insurance company. It was actually a blessing in disguise. Loads of miles and 5 years old it was ready to go anyway.

And so it is almost Christmas again. How time flies!

On the 20th, June and I will be going to “The night of the Proms” show at the “Sport Paleis” in Antwerp. Texas is playing there and we’d love to see them. We are showing our age, aren’t we!

And then, very soon we will be winging our way to Singapore where we will be spending Christmas!

Christmas on the equator. Who would have ever thought of that!

While we are there we will be visiting Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur as well. I just have to go to the latter. We used it often as an excuse to have a drink a little earlier than normal back in Linbro Park.

“It must be 5 o’clock in Kuala Lumpur!”

Well, let me leave you. There is lots and lots of interesting reading in this newsletter. Don’t forget that we are always looking forward to feedback and treat everyone’s point of view with the respect it deserves. We might not always agree but that is everyone’s prerogative. Everybody has a point of view and you are more than welcome to air it right here.

All the best and take care.

Till next month,



Here is something just for the fun of it. A bit of a brain teaser if you haven’ seen it before!

World’s easiest quiz

(Passing requires at least 4 correct answers)

  1. How long did the Hundred Years’ War last?
  2. Which country makes Panama hats?
  3. From which animal do we get cat gut?
  4. In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution?
  5. What is a camel’s hair brush made of?
  6. The Canary Islands in the Pacific are named after what animal?
  7. What was King George VI’s first name?
  8. What color is a purple finch?
  9. Where are Chinese gooseberries from?
  10. What is the color of the black box in a commercial airplane?

Have fun! The answers can be found here after the 15th of October.


“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched.
They must be felt with the heart.”
-Helen Keller-A log cannot burn on its own

He who forgives ends the quarrel
-African Proverb-


Food for thought

The Donkey


We’ve all seen this before but it can’t do any harm to read it again

So true …….

One day a farmer’s donkey fell down into a
well. The animal cried piteously for hours as
the farmer tried to figure out what to do.

Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the
well needed to be covered up anyway;
it just wasn’t worth it to retrieve the donkey.

He invited all his neighbours to come over and
help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began
to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the
donkey realized what was happening and cried
horribly. Then, to everyone’s amazement he quieted down.

A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing.
He would shake it off and take a step up.

As the farmer’s neighbours continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up.

Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!

Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well
is to shake it off and take a step up.
Each of our troubles is a steppingstone. We can get out
of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up!
Shake it off and take a step up.

Remember the five simple rules to be happy:

Free your heart from hatred – Forgive
Free your mind from worries – Most never happen
Live simply and appreciate what you have
Give more (not money silly!)
Expect less


Enough of that crap …..
The donkey later came back, and bit the farmer who had tried to bury him.
The gash from the bite got infected and the farmer eventually died in agony from septic shock.


When you do something wrong, and try to cover your ass, it always comes back to bite you.

You have two choices … smile and close this
newsletter, or pass this along to someone else to
spread the fun.


Story of the month

What there is to know about oils

The other day someone mailed me and asked what groundnut oil was and where he could get it.
So, I Googled this and found a host of very interesting information about cooking oils.

Here it is.


There are a wide variety of cooking oils. Here are some of them.

Avocado oil
A smooth, rich, extra virgin oil extracted from avocados. Uses: Avocado oil can be used in a wide variety of dishes. Drizzle over meat, fish or vegetables before roasting, use it to make salad dressings and marinades or simply serve as an accompaniment to warm, crusty bread. Avocado oil has a high smoke point, so it is also suitable for frying foods at high temperatures.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Corn oil
Also known as maize oil, this oil has a rather bland taste but is high in polyunsaturates and so is one of the healthier oils. Groundnut oil can be used in place of corn oil.
Uses: Due to its high heating point it is suitable for deep frying.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

French walnut oil
This has a distinctive nutty flavour and is often used an alternative to olive oil.
Uses: Walnut oil is best used in salads and dressings rather than in cooking.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Grape-seed oil
A very light oil which is best used in cooking.
Uses: It can be heated to high temperatures without the subtle flavour spoiling so is suitable for deep or shallow frying. It has very little flavour and so is ideal for cooking subtly flavoured foods such as fish.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Groundnut oil
Extracted from peanuts (so also called peanut oil), groundnut oil is pale in colour and of a light consistency. It has a subtle, pleasant flavour and can be heated to a high temperature without burning. Corn oil can be used instead of groundnut oil.
Uses: Groundnut oil is particularly popular in Chinese cookery. Suitable for stir and deep frying.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Roasted pumpkin seed oil
This rich, dark green oil is made in Austria from skinless pumpkin seeds. It has a nutty flavour and toasted aroma. It is high in unsaturated fats and contains essential vitamins including vitamin E.
Uses: Ideal for dressings, sauces and marinades. Drizzle over roasted vegetables for a delicious nutty flavour. Roasted pumpkin seed oil also adds a nutty taste when drizzled over ice cream.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Safflower oil
Similar to sunflower oil (the two are interchangeable) this light oil is made from safflowers which are in fact from the same family as the sunflower. It is high in polyunsaturates which makes it a healthy choice.
Uses: A good light cooking oil for shallow frying.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Sunflower oil
Extracted from sunflower seeds, it is high in polyunsaturated fat and low in saturated fat.
Uses: A good all-round oil for shallow frying. It is not suitable for deep frying because it smokes and burns at very high temperatures.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Truffle oil
This combination of olive oil and truffle extract has a wonderful nutty black truffle flavour. It can be used as a substitute for truffles or in conjunction with them to enhance their flavour.
Uses: It is used as a flavouring, and not for cooking. Add to risottos, pasta dishes, salads and salad dressings. To make truffle flavoured butter, melt 75g of butter and stir in 1-2 tsp of oil, stir well and allow cool, before storing in the fridge.
To store: Truffle oil is very delicate and should be stored away from sunlight in a cool place.

Toasted sesame oil Also referred to as roasted sesame oil. As the name suggests, is extracted from toasted sesame seeds. It has a very strong flavour, a dark colour and is often used in Oriental cookery as a flavouring but it not suitable for cooking.
Uses: Sprinkle a little sesame oil over salads, stir fries and any Oriental-style dishes for a deliciously nutty flavour.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Vegetable oil
A blended oil that can be a combination of sunflower, safflower, groundnut or any other bland vegetable oil. Blended vegetable oil is less expensive than pure oil.
Uses: Blended oil is most often used for shallow or deep frying.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Olive oil
This oil has been used for thousands of years. As early as 2,500 BC in Crete, forests were felled to make room for olive groves. Trade in ‘liquid gold’ as they called it, formed the basis for much of Greece’s maritime and imperial expansion. The Romans grew even richer by planting huge orchards throughout their empire.

In the ancient world, the olive was the richest source of their necessary oil. It flavoured and cooked food, lit lamps, formed the base of medicines, and was the ritual liquid used for anointing priests and kings.

The best olive oils are always expensive because they are costly to produce. Like wines, they vary with climate, country, area of origin and from year to year. Many different varieties of olive are grown for oil, so the range of oils is wide. They vary in colour, flavour, aroma, consistency and character and come mainly from France, Italy, Spain, and Greece.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

The different types of olive oils:

Virgin olive oil
This is the oil which results from the first cold pressing of the olives. It is natural and pure and has no other oils added to it.

Refined olive oil
This oil is obtained from the refining of oils which fail to qualify for the grade of virgin oil, either because of defective flavour or excessive acidity.
The residual pulp from the first pressing is pressed again (second pressing), this time using heat, to yield a fattier and more acid oil which is often blended with first-pressing oil to make commercial, branded olive oil.
Uses: Salad dressings, mayonnaise, marinades, casseroles, shallow frying, sautéeing, grilling and roasting or to toss with pasta and vegetables.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

The different varieties of olive oil:

Basil olive oil Extra virgin olive oil infused with basil. Stir this delicious herb-flavoured oil into pasta dishes, marinades or dressings.

Chilli olive oil Extra virgin olive oil infused with chillies.
Add this spicy oil to pasta or salad dressings for a hot flavour or use to shallow fry bacon or chicken to give a subtle hint of chilli.

Extra virgin olive oil A high quality oil for salads, marinades and pastas.

Garlic olive oil Extra virgin olive oil infused with garlic.
This delicious flavoured oil can be added to a variety of recipes. Use it in marinades and stir-fries or drizzle over cooked pasta.

Greek extra virgin olive oil Greek olive oil is light green in colour and has a mild flavour.
It has a peppery taste and comes from olives grown in the Kalamata region of Greece. Use for drizzling over traditional Greek salad with feta cheese, or toss through freshly cooked pasta and serve with fresh basil leaves, grated Parmesan cheese and plenty of freshly ground black pepper.

Light olive oil This is a delicate and mild olive oil which has a very light, fresh and subtle flavour.
Light olive oil is especially suitable for cooking – from baking to frying but can also be used for salad dressings and marinades.

Rosemary olive oil Extra virgin olive oil infused with rosemary.
Use this wonderfully aromatic flavoured oil in dressings and sauces or include in marinades to give fish and meat a delicious flavour. Sprinkle over roasted vegetables or potatoes for a delicious Mediterranean flavour.

Spanish extra virgin olive oil Spanish olive oil tends to be light and fragrant – ideal for salad dressings or serve as an alternative to butter with bread – simply dip the bread into the oil.


The often asked question is ………..

What is extra virgin olive oil?

Before we can understand ‘extra virgin’ we first have to clarify the word ‘virgin’.

What it describes, quite simply, is oil pressed from the fruit of the olive tree under conditions that cause no deterioration of the finished oil – the olives are not damaged, bruised or subjected to adverse temperatures or too much air, and they must not have undergone any additional treatment such as heat or blending (other than with other virgin olive oil).

The supreme quality is measured by acidity or, more precisely, the lack of it – too much acidity gives a harsher flavour, which can, with skill, be refined out. What is simply termed olive oil is often a blend of lesser-quality refined oils with some virgin added to give the right balance of flavour.

Extra virgin olive oil could, in fact, have another name – perfect virgin olive oil, because this is precisely what it is: virgin olive oil with no flaws whatsoever.
By law the acidity of extra virgin olive oil is never more than 0.8 per cent, and what does this mean? Flavour. First there is an aromatic fragrance, then a sweetness not marred by acidity, and then an abundant taste of fruit, verdant and luscious, not tasting like olives exactly but like some other mysterious, unique fruit.
Like very fine wine, extra virgin olive oil is both rich and flavoursome.

Which country produces the best olive oil?

Difficult to answer, this.
The olives of each country have their own character and flavour, which will even vary from region to region: a Tuscan olive oil, for instance, is different to a Ligurian olive oil.
If I were being a purist I would suggest that Provençal dishes should be made with oils made in Provence, and Italian, Greek or Spanish dishes made with the oil produced in that country.
But unless you do masses of cooking its best to find an olive oil you are happy with, and my recommendation is to have an extra virgin oil for special occasions, along with an everyday

South African Meat Industry Company

Samic has excellent meat cutting charts. Just click on the banner below for lots of interesting information.


Our Home Biltong Makers (What people say)

The Homemade Stuff is Exquisite!!
Gary Grynkewich, USA


Hi Biltongmakers!

Dear Lo,

We’ve had our biltong maker for a few weeks. There is a major flaw with your invention, it is not big enough!! As soon as I finish a batch, it is immediately devoured by my husband and son, who cannot get enough of the biltong. Any chance of producing a much larger machine?

Many thanks.
Lee Forfar
Tadley, Hampshire, England.

Well, I changed out the plug, ran out and bought a kilo of London broil (silverside), marinated it in the vinegar and spice mix and hung it in the Biltong Maker to dry.
I know I am a Yank and maybe not the most knowledgeable in these things, but I’ve had biltong from South Africa (don’t ask me how it found its way to the States), and from two or three purveyors who make it here in the States commercially, and it just does not compare.
You have made my South African wife and myself very happy!

Gary S. Grynkewich

I am proud to say that making biltong seemed a daunting task – but after purchasing the 2kg biltong maker, it’s a breeze.

Charmaine Basson
Milnerton, Cape Town

The most popular Home Biltong Maker in the world!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!!

Details on ROCKEY’S 5kg Home Biltong Maker can be found by clicking on this link.

It's as easy as 1-2-3 to make your own Biltong!

You can have a look at the BILTONG BUDDY here.

This month’s specials

Christmas is around the corner …..

In three months from now Christmas 2006 will be something of the past.

Scary …. isn’t it!

Order your machine now and surface mail it! That way the shipping won’t cost a fortune and it will be there before Christmas (if you hurry with your order!)

So, for 15 MORE DAYS ONLY, starting on Sunday, October 1, 2006, the following prices will apply:

Rockey’s incredible 5kg Home Biltong Maker @ only R 795.00! (Normal retail is R 950.00).
The unbeatable Biltong Buddy (2kg) @ only R 650.00! (Normal retail is R 750.00).

Make use of this opportunity and ask for surface mail! It costs a fraction of the airmail cost.

Surprise your family and friends with a piece of real South African Biltong this Christmas. It’s as easy as 1-2-3 and loads of fun too!

Click here to go to our on-line shop.

Tips of the month

Some more useful tips

How many of these did YOU know about?


  • A sealed envelope – Put in the freezer for a few hours, then slide a knife under the flap. The envelope can then be re=sealed. (hmmmmmm…)
  • Use an empty toilet paper roll to store appliance cords. It keeps them neat and you can write on the roll what appliance it belongs to.
  • For icy door steps in freezing temperatures: get warm water and put dish washing liquid in it. Pour it all over the steps and they won’t refreeze. (wish I had known this for the last 40 years!)
  • To remove old wax from a glass candle holder, put it in the freezer for a few hours. Then take the candle holder out and turn it upside down. The wax will fall out.
  • Crayon marks on walls? This worked wonderfully! A damp rag, dipped in baking soda. Comes off with little effort (elbow grease that is!).
  • Permanent marker on appliances/counter tops (like store receipt BLUE!) use rubbing alcohol on a paper towel.
  • Whenever I purchase a box of S.O.S Pads, I immediately take a pair of scissors and cut each pad into halves. After years of having to throw away rusted and unused and smelly pads, I finally decided that this would be much more economical. Now a box of S.O.S pads last me indefinitely! In fact, I have noticed that the scissors get ‘sharpened” this way!
  • Blood stains on clothes? Not to worry! Just pour a little hydrogen peroxide on a cloth and proceed to wipe off every drop of blood. Works every time! (Now, where to put the body?) LOL!
  • Use vertical strokes when washing windows outside and horizontal for inside windows. This way you can tell which side has the streaks!
    Straight vinegar will get outside windows really clean.
    Don ‘t wash windows on a sunny day. They will dry too quickly and will probably streak.
  • Spray a bit of perfume on the light bulb in any room to create a lovely light scent in each room when the light is turned on.
  • Place fabric softener sheets in dresser drawers and your clothes will smell freshly washed for weeks to come. You can also do this with towels and linen.
  • Candles will last a lot longer if placed in the freezer for at least 3 hours prior to burning.
  • To clean artificial flowers, pour some salt into a paper bag and add the flowers. Shake vigorously as the salt will absorb all the dust and dirt and leave your artificial flowers looking like new! Works like a charm!
  • To easily remove burnt-on food from your skillet, simply add a drop or two of dishwashing liquid and enough water to cover bottom of pan, and bring to a boil on stove top.
  • Spray your TUPPERWARE with nonstick cooking spray before pouring in tomato based sauces and there won’t be any stains.
  • Wrap celery in aluminum foil when putting in the refrigerator and it will keep for weeks.
  • When boiling corn on the cob, add a pinch of sugar to help bring out the corn’s natural sweetness
  • Cure for headaches: take a lime, cut it in half, and rub it on your forehead. The throbbing will go away.
  • Don’t throw out all that leftover wine: Freeze into ice cubes for future use in casseroles and sauces ……… Left over wine? What’s that ? 🙂
  • To get rid of itch from mosquito bites, try applying soap on the area and you will experience instant relief.
  • Ants, ants, ants everywhere … Well, they are said to never cross a chalk line. So, get your chalk out and draw a line on the floor or wherever ants tend to march. See for yourself.
  • Use air-freshener to clean mirrors. It does a good job and better still, leaves a lovely smell to the shine.
  • When you get a splinter, reach for the scotch tape before resorting to tweezers or a needle. Simply put the scotch tape over the splinter, and then pull it off. Scotch tape removes most splinters painlessly and easily.

Now look what you can do with Alka Seltzer …….

Clean a toilet
Drop in two Alka Seltzer tablets, wait twenty minutes, brush and flush. The citric acid and effervescent action clean vitreous China

Clean a vase
To remove a stain from the bottom of a glass vase or cruet, fill with water and drop in two Alka Seltzer tablets

Polish jewelry
Drop two Alka Seltzer tablets into a glass of water and immerse the jewelry for two minutes

Clean a thermos bottle
Fill the bottle with water, drop in four Alka Seltzer tablets, and let soak for an hour (or longer, if necessary)

Unclog a drain
Clear the sink drain by dropping three Alka Seltzer tablets down the drain followed by a cup of (Heinz) white vinegar. Wait a few minutes, and then run the hot water


  • Bloedvekke – Mielieblom kan bloedvlekke verwyder. Spoel die vlek in koue water, vryf dan klam mielieblom in. Plaas die item in die son.
  • Juweliersware – Maak juweliersware skoon deur dit oornag te week in ‘n mengsel van koeksoda en asyn. Indien nodig, skrop liggies met ‘n ou tandeborsel. Dit verwyder alle vuilighede sonder om die stene, goud of silver te beskadig.
    MOENIE perels oornag week nie – net vir sowat ‘n uur.
  • Kakkerlakke – sit naeltjies in al jou kombuiskaste en/of waar hulle ookal voorkom.
  • Molle – Die goedkoopste raat is as jy honde het, moet jy die honde bolle (landmyne) in die molle se gange of gate gooi.

Meat Cutting Charts

Below you will find three meat cutting charts.

These are displayed with the compliments of SAMIC.
(The South African Meat Industry Company).
SAMIC has a very interesting web site as well as a weekly newsletter about anything to do with the
Meat Industry in South Africa.
Now, don’t think this is a totally boring web site (I thought so first) but it has some very interesting articles and statistics.

Beef Cutting Chart
Pork Cutting Chart
Lamb Cutting Chart

* * * * Advertisement – Advertisement – Advertisement – Advertisement – Advertisement * * * *

Ladies en gentlemen……

Anton Goosen!

” … vir elke alkie, elke junkie, space cadet, buttonhead … ”
“… vir die boys in die suburbs …”

Are you a fan of South African Rock and Boereblues?
Remember “Blommetjie gedenk aan my”, “Honkie Tonk Donkie” en “Boy van die Suburbs”?

People in the Benelux can join us on the weekend of October 20th for an evening with Anton Goosen, the original “Liedjieboer”, who will perform these and many more of his unforgettable songs in a cozy pub setting where everyone can sing along!

But, be quick because this show is selling out fast!
Anto will appear at Bunswyck Castle in Leuven.
The tickets are only 20.00 Euros per person and that includes a light buffet!

You can send an email to loraine@bassons.org


Also go to the South African Events in Europe web site. There are loads of things happening!

Questions and Answers

As every month, 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 @
so we can help other people who might have the same questions in the future)


Your “Chicken and Yoghurt” Potjie recipe refers.
What is Dried ‘Dragon’ and how/where do I get hold of it in South Africa?

Brian Mann
South Africa



Thanks for a fab web site! I thoroughly enjoy it.
Quick couple of questions for you to rack your brains.
In Ireland we have the same problem as our Kiwi friend (See our Whakatane Boerewors recipe from David Lewis).
The cows here only eat grass and the meat is very lean with little fat. (What else do cows eat? -Ed)
I make my own wors and am battling to get it juicy and succulent. The taste is spot on but the wors tends to be dry. I don’t want to increase the spek content as I am already using 30% spek and I don’t use water at all but only vinegar.
Would water make the wors more succulent (I use 120ml vinegar per 1.5kg wors). Secondly, the recipe I have is for 1.5kg. Is it in order to assume that the wors would be the same if I double the quantities of all the ingredients ?
I look forward to your expert advice.

Allister Erasmus



I want to find out from YOU, how do you make a South African pie’s puff pastry
Please lead me from the ingredient to how to make it …

(We don’t know where Michael is from -Ed)



I made some droëwors last week and after 4 days most of the sticks at the bottom of the cabinet were with mould.
Mostly at the bottom of the sticks.
I hung a few at the top part of the dryer. The meat of the wet wors is still a bit reddish but not smelly.
What could cause the slow drying and mould only on some parts of the wors?

Eric Mainguard

Editor note:
Eric has the Junior Industrial Biltong Drying Cabinet.



I am looking for a recipe to make:
* Garlic flavoured boerewors
* Cheese flavoured boerewors
Do you know where I may be able to get recipes?

New Zealand


Stoep Talk

My sex drive is in my head ……. I want it lower!
By James ClarkeA number of readers have, over the years, sent me snippets related to the easiest of all life’s tasks – growing old. I have scores of them and have been saving them up for a rainy day.

Well, right now it’s pretty cloudy outside, so I’ll hand over to Michael Pohl of motor- cycling fame, Pete of Randburg, Janet Nicholson of Maritzburg, Kas Beyer of Kentucky and others whose names Threnody has long lost.

One story concerns an elderly man, well groomed, smelling slightly of a good aftershave, who walked into an up-market cocktail lounge. Seated at the bar was an attractive elderly woman.

The old man sat alongside her and ordered a drink. Then he said to her, “So tell me, do I come here often?”

An old man said, “Just when I was getting my head together, my body began falling apart.”

One symptom of ageing is that you don’t care where your spouse goes, just as long as you don’t have to go along.

Another is when you’re sitting in your rocking chair and you can’t get it started.

Bob Hope, on turning 70, said, “You can still chase women, but only downhill”. On turning 100 he said, “I don’t feel old. In fact, I don’t feel anything until noon. Then it’s time for my nap.”

I think the truest thing said about ageing is that, inside every old person is a younger person wondering what happened.

Somebody advised that when you are dissatisfied and would like to go back to youth, think of algebra.

One nice thing about being senile is you can hide your own Easter eggs.

And a fellow in a retirement village said ruefully, “I’ve sure got old! I’ve had two bypass surgeries, a hip replacement, new knees; I’m half blind, can’t hear anything quieter than a jet engine, take six different medications that make me dizzy; have bouts with dementia. Can’t remember if I’m 85 or 92. Thank goodness I can still drive myself around.”

A 97-year-old man told his doctor, “Doc, I want my sex drive lowered.”

The doctor said, “But you’re 97. Don’t you think your sex drive is all in your head?”

“You’re damned right it is!” replied the old man. “That’s why I want it lowered!”

An elderly woman decided to prepare her will and told her preacher, she had two final requests. First, she wanted to be cremated and second, she wanted her ashes scattered over Pick ‘n Pay. The preacher asked, “Why Pick ‘n Pay?”

“Then I’ll be sure my daughters visit me twice a week.”

My favourite: “These days about half the stuff in my shopping trolley says, ‘For fast relief’.”


From the same Kas Beyer comes a story of a Wyoming state policeman who received a 3am call saying a car was stuck in the snow on the outskirts of Casper.

The policeman found the car with the engine still running. Behind the wheel was a sleeping man with a half empty bottle of vodka.

The officer tapped on the window, startling the driver who, seeing the flashing blue police light and the policeman at the window, shoved the car into gear and hit the accelerator. The car’s speedometer moved up to 60km/ph, but the car remained stationary, wheels spinning, trapped in snow.

The policeman, having a sense of humour, began running on the spot next to the window yelling “Pull over!” The boggled-eyed man obeyed, turning off his engine. He was arrested and is probably still telling his disbelieving mates about a cop who can run at 60km/ph.

Recipe corner


We all know the Famous Ouma’s Rusks. If you live outside South Africa they are mostly very difficult to come by. So, here are two recipes to make your own Buttermilk Rusks.
It’s so easy, have a look!
But first …… the story of Ouma’s Rusks.

It all began in the year 1939 in the small Eastern Cape town of Molteno (near Burgersfort just south of the Vrijstaat).
The effects of the Great Depression had brought many communities to their knees.

It was at this time that Ouma Greyvensteyn and her friends attended a church meeting where ways in which to help mission work were discussed. Like in the Gospel, the women were given half-a-crown each to use their talents.

Then it came to her – using just one half-a-crown, the time-honoured family recipe and her home cooking talents, she baked her Rusks to sheer perfection and then sold them to the visiting farmers’ wives in the community.
Within days orders were pouring in for Ouma’s delicious Rusks. Today, we are proud of our heritage.

From the humble beginnings of one half-a-crown, this unique, crunchy snack has become a true South African icon, which is sought after in many countries around the world. The ideal treat, that can be served any time of the day, morning, noon or night, and are delicious with coffee or tea.

Did you know that you can get Ouma’s Rusks in six different flavours?: Condensed Milk, Aniseed, Buttermilk, Muesli, Wholewheat and Dunkems Blueberry (whatever THAT may be -Ed).


Here are two recipes. One for normal rusks and one for the buttermilk variety.

Traditional Rusks (Beskuit) – dunk in your coffee…..


  • 2 cups unbleached white flour
  • 2 cups whole wheat bread flour (coarsely ground if possible)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp pure almond extract


  • Preheat oven to 180-200 degrees(C)
  • In a large mixing bowl, thoroughly mix the dry ingredients.
  • Combine all the wet ingredients, pour them into the dry ingredients, and stir until you have a soft dough, similar to biscuit dough
  • Turn the dough onto a well-floured surface and roll or pat it to about a 1½ cm thickness
  • Cut the dough into rectangles about 5 by 10 cm. Bake the Rusks about 10 cm apart on buttered baking sheet for about 25 minutes until the tops are crisping and browning a little
  • Now, eat a few “soft” Rusks warm from the oven. Loosely pile the Rusks on a baking sheet and keep them in a 100 degrees(C)oven all day or all night (about 12 hours) to dry.
  • The finished Rusks should be very dry and hard. Cool and store in an airtight container. Rusks will keep for a long time.


Buttermilk Rusks


  • 1 kg self raising flour
  • 5 ml baking powder
  • 10 ml salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 200 ml white sugar
  • 500 ml buttermilk
  • 190 g butter, melted


  • Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together
  • Beat the eggs, sugar and buttermilk together
  • Cut this mixture into the dry ingredients with a knife
  • Knead the dough lightly gradually adding the butter while kneading. This will take about 7 minutes.
  • Pack balls of dough tightly into greased loaf pans. The balls should reach about 2/3rds the height of the pans
  • Bake at 180C for 30 minutes
  • Turn out onto a wire rack and break into individual Rusks
  • Lower the oven temperature to 100C and dry the Rusks for about 4 hours, turning them every 30 minutes
  • Cool on a wire rack and store in airtight containers

Rusks will keep for at least 3 months, but believe me, they won’t last that long!


Click below for our handy cooking converter
Our handy cooking converter
Stories from South Africa

Smoking to be stubbed out in SA

South Africa is one step closer to tightening up its already tough smoking laws, which health department officials say will effectively criminalise smoking. Even outdoor smoking could attract a hefty fine.

The Tobacco Products Control Amendment Bill was tabled in parliament this month (September 2006) and is likely to be on the statute books by year-end.

It will bring in massive fines and tighten up loopholes in existing legislation.

Among others, it bans the entry of anyone under 18 into smoking areas.

It also gives the health minister the right to prohibit the smoking of any tobacco product in a prescribed outdoor place “where persons are likely to congregate within close proximity of one another or where smoking may pose a fire or other hazard”.


‘Does not plan to relax restrictions during the 2010 World Cup’   The health ministry is on record as saying it does not plan to relax restrictions during the 2010 World Cup, following calls from the Tobacco Institute of South Africa to be more “open-minded” around smoking legislation during this period.

The Bill also provides for penalties for failing to protect employees from tobacco smoke pollution, for selling tobacco products in a health institution and for retailers who do not comply with point-of-sale conditions.

In a statement on Wednesday, the health ministry said the proposed age restriction for sale of tobacco would be increased from 16 to 18 years.

This was in line with the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control ratified by South Africa.

Children under the age of 18 would no longer be allowed in a designated smoking area, said spokesperson Sibani Mngadi.

The Bill increased penalties so that they would become a real deterrent against contravention of the country’s tobacco laws.

The fine for the owner of a public place or employer who failed to ensure that there was no smoking in a smoke-free area had been increased from R200 to a minimum of R20 000, he said.

The penalty for selling tobacco products to a minor and for failure to comply with regulations on vending machines had been increased from R10 000 to a minimum of R100 000, Mngadi said.

The penalty for advertising and giving away free cigarettes had been increased from R200 000 to a minimum of R1-million.

The Bill also makes it an offence for an individual to smoke in a non-smoking area and the penalty is set at not less than R300.

Mngadi said the proposed penalties were comparable to those in other legislation.

He noted that the fine for selling liquor to a person under 18 was R1-million or five years in prison.


Around the World

Going home or staying put?

Our article of last month on crime in South Africa caused quite a stir! (Click here to read it again)

We were expecting a stream of protests but instead received a flood of emails and phone calls from people who congratulated us for having the courage to speak up and to point out what is happening.

It is sad that no-one (Absolutely NO-ONE!!) wrote in to defend South Africa!!

In fact the silence from those quarters was deafening!!

We are not a political web site and never will be but what was mentioned (and not only by us) just made very interesting reading.

Unfortunately we cannot possibly publish every mail we received in response to the article but here are a few.

Please note that the views expressed below are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the editor!


I left in 1996 and only went back for the first time in 2003 holiday.
Much had changed, some of it for the better and some for the worse (a lot for the worse).
Last year August I went back on holiday again and the place had deteriorated even more in that short time.
My family live in Sandton and Port Alfred so I still have very strong ties with South Africa. My brother says that Johannesburg has become so bad that he is moving to Port Alfred soon.

I am not surprised that there are the sort of web sites you pointed out in your newsletter.
I will be ordering my 5 kg home biltong dryer (and some spices) over the next few days.

Richard Strapp


Hello Lo,

Today I received my first newsletter from you – many thanks, it was really interesting; I enjoyed your trip to Holland and I hope that your argument with the 18 wheeler did not leave any permanent damage. Thanks for including my article!

About the crime in South Africa – I would like to add my perspective which is a little more optimistic. We are lucky enough to have homes in two countries (Finland and South Africa) and we spend time in both countries. We live in an apartment very close to the centre of Cape Town (in Tamboerskloof, near Kloof Street/Long Street).
We are able to walk to the city centre during the day (I can walk alone during the day) and even at midnight along Kloof/Long because there is such a vibrant night life.
I would not walk alone, I think that would be asking for trouble, but I feel safe walking with my husband.
I admit to having to check over my shoulder constantly; it would be naïve to think that one is really safe. We have come to the conclusion that if we are careful and take necessary precautions, Cape Town (or parts of it) is a great place to live!

I have lived in Africa my whole life (except for coming and going from Finland for the past 13 years) and I am fortunate enough to have not been involved in any violent crime. I can only hope and pray that neither I nor my family is ever involved because I am sure that would change my perspective.

It’s the sea, the mountains, the air, the vibe, the people that draw us back. It is intoxicating and very hard to get Africa out of the system. Europe is relatively safe but it can be so grey and cold.

Lyn Gunell
Cape Town and Finland


I can only say, after signing hundreds of petitions, none of which have altered anything in South Africa, from Mbeki to virtually every minister in South Africa ….

WAKE UP …. you that are still there and talk with your feet.
As one of their politicians put it so profoundly poetically and matter of factly in parliament about crime: “If you don’t like it, pack your bags and leave!” With that sort of mentality what hope in hell do we have?

Leave now, the young that can anyway and walk out of South Africa. Only when the brain-drain has hit home MAYBE something will be done.

The problem with those that remain is that the rapes, murders and pillaging that is going on only happens to others and not to them. Heaven forbid that they will eventually become a statistic as well.

Show me anywhere in Africa where life has improved since independence. Get real and face the fact that the four odd million of you that are left will never change the inevitable slide into third world chaos.

Dream on but look to the north and show me anywhere where they are better off now.

I don’t bear malice to my former beautiful country but have accepted that it now belongs to the majority and it not the country I once knew any longer. If you want to stay then you must be prepared to put up with the mentality and the pain, suffering and heart ache that comes with it.

For those who think I am being over-critical; I import over five million Rands a year of South African foodstuffs as does Springbok Delights in Sydney so we still support their economy even though we don’t live there any longer.

Fred Ericsen-Miller
Cape to Cairo(Springbok Foods)
Box 506
Wembley, WA 6913, Australia


Something to smile about

Smart Woman!

Wife vs husband
A couple drove down a country road for several miles, not saying a word.
An earlier discussion had led to an argument and neither of them wanted to concede their position.
As they passed a barnyard of mules, goats, and pigs, the husband asked sarcastically, “Relatives of yours?”
“Yep,” the wife replied, “In-laws.”

A husband read an article to his wife about how many words women use a day … 30,000 to a man’s 15,000.
The wife replied, “The reason has to be because we have to repeat everything to men …
The husband then turned to his wife and asked, “What?”

A man said to his wife one day: “I don’t know how you can be so stupid and so beautiful all at the same time”.
The wife responded: “Allow me to explain. God made me beautiful so you would be attracted to me; God made me stupid so I would be attracted to you!”

Who does what?
A man and his wife were having an argument about who should brew the coffee each morning. The wife said: “You should do it, because you get up first, and then we don’t have to wait as long to get our coffee.”
The husband said: ” You are in charge of the cooking around here and you should do it, because that is your job, and I can just wait for my coffee.” The wife replied: “No, you should do it, and besides, it is in the Bible that the man should do the coffee.”
Husband replies: “I can’t believe that, show me.”
So she fetched the Bible, and opened the New Testament and showed him at the top of several pages, that it indeed says …… “HEBREWS”

The Silent Treatment
A man and his wife were having some problems at home and were giving each other the silent treatment. Suddenly, the man realized that the next day, he would need his wife to wake him at 5:00 am for an early morning business flight.
Not wanting to be the first to break the silence (and LOSE), he wrote on a piece of paper, “Please wake me at 5:00 am.”
He left it where he knew she would find it. The next morning, the man woke up, only to discover it was 9:00 am and he had missed his flight.
Furious, he was about to go and see why his wife hadn’t wakened him, when he noticed a piece of paper by the bed.
The paper said, “It is 5:00 am. Wake up.”
Men are just not equipped for these kinds of contests.


God may have created man before woman, but there is always a rough draft before the masterpiece!

Sport talk

Snippets from the papers

Gogga left in the cold by cricket bosses
Paul Adams last played a Test for South Africa two years ago. He turns 30 in January, an age at which spinners are entering their prime. Yet the chances of him representing his country again look very slim.
Full Story …

Toothless Sharks run ragged by Cheetahs
The Free State Cheetahs’ dominance over the Sharks extended to eight matches when they out-thought, out-muscled and out-played Dick Muir’s team in Saturday’s one-sided Absa Currie Cup semifinal here.
Full Story …

Bulls make it five in a row after WP win
The Blue Bulls proved beyond reasonable doubt that they are South Africa’s premier domestic rugby team when they produced a near flawless game of rugby to feature in their fifth consecutive Currie Cup final after beating Western Province 45-30 at Loftus on Saturday.
Full Story …

Cape Town’s Fields of Dreams – 2010
John Comitis has a bold, ambitious vision that he believes will leave the Western Cape with a lasting legacy once the 2010 World Cup has packed up and left our shores. Rodney Reiners speaks to the Ajax Cape Town boss about his dream.
Full Story …


-Where can you watch rugby on TV?-
Click here to find out where in most countries!
Let’s hear from you too!!

Come on, let’s hear from you too!

Many people subscribe to our newsletter and many more are joining every day. They do so because they enjoy reading it and they 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 Europe

Boerewors (Europe only, sorry people!)

We have had lovely weather in September and the Boeries has been flying out of the door. Boeries on the braai!
We will keep ample stock this coming winter so if you need boerewors just email us or call. You can either collect or we can mail it to you.
All our customers in Holland, Belgium and in fact, all over Europe are raving about the packing of and the condition in which the wors arrived at their doorsteps.

You too could have some real South African Boerewors on the braai next time!!
Just give us a call on +32 (16) 53.96.25 or email us.

Our Boerewors is vacuum packed in quantities of about 500 gram.
The normal price is € 8.45 per kg but for the time being we will keep it at only € 7.95 per kg!!


Droëwors for the UK and Europe!

Droëwors …… a typical South African delicacy all of its own!

Droëwors, as it is known in South Africa, is as much part of the country’s culinary culture as Biltong, Pap, Boerewors and Potjiekos.
Real South African Droë Wors!The spices are of course imported especially from South Africa so you will get the “real” thing!
After our special pricing promotion was announced last month all droëwors was sold within a week! We are not back to our normal pricing of € 39.00 per kg and you can still get it at € 24.00 per kg.

Droëwors travels well and posting is an ideal option.
We can mail it to you in Europe and the UK via priority mail in minimum quantities of 1 kg.
See all the mailing rates by going to www.boerewors.be

Interested? Give us a call or email.

Lamb on the Spit

Lamb on the Spit ……. something special!

The Braai season is over in Europe (except for some diehards!) but there is always the Spring and Summer of 2007!!

Lamb on the Spit is a way of entertaining as only known by very few mainly because it is thought to be very expensive ……. Not so!

Click to see me big!We will do a lamb on the Spit for parties of between 30 and 50 people for just € 18.00 and € 15.00 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. Garlic or bread rolls are included as well.
For venues more than 50 km from our home base in Keerbergen there is a small transport fee.
The barbecue season is almost over but there is always next year.
Start planning now for the Spring and next Summer!
Remember that we are doing these functions only during weekends.


Booking early is essential and you can do so on
+32(16) 53-9625 or email us.

(A Lamb on the Spit can only be done outside because we cook on coals!)


Previous issues of our Newsletter

You can click on the links below to view some of the previous issues of our newsletter.



October 2005
November 2005
December 2005
January 2006
February 2006
March 2006
April 2006
May 2006
June 2006
July 2006
August 2006
September 2006

Subscribing and Unsubscribing

Perhaps you would like to subscribe to this newsletter or tell a friend about Biltongmakers.Com! and the incredible Biltong Makers!! You can be included in this newsletter by clicking on the following link.
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If you prefer not to receive email from us, you can unsubscribe from Biltongmakers.Com! by clicking on this link.
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Stuff about us

Shipping biltongmakers world-wide since 1995 …

At biltongmakers.com you will find lots of interesting information about biltong, its history, how to make it, recipes, spices and lots of other things!!!

We also have everything you want to know about Boerewors, Droëwors, Potjiekos as well as lovely South African recipes and spices.

In memory of Kel Malherbe

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Our Customers say...

Great machine

"Great machine, it pays itself off in 2 batches and is just as good as any I have ever had from a butcher....."

Nick de Klerk, Johannesburg

-Thank you for your kind comment! - Lo

Biltong Makers

Nick de Klerk, Johannesburg

-Thank you for your kind comment! - Lo

"Great machine, it pays itself off in 2 batches and is just as good as any I have ever had from a butcher....."

Compact gadget

I was delighted that such a compact gadget could produce biltong in a hygienic environment and to my own particular taste so quickly! I enjoy dry, spicy and fat free biltong which was ready in four days! The one thing I did notice was that the meat must be correctly cut (much like steak). Great biltong maker which will be enjoyed by us on a regular basis.
Biltong Makers
I was delighted that such a compact gadget could produce biltong in a hygienic environment and to my own particular taste so quickly! I enjoy dry, spicy and fat free biltong which was ready in four days! The one thing I did notice was that the meat must be correctly cut (much like steak). Great biltong maker which will be enjoyed by us on a regular basis.


Dear Biltong Team,

Yesterday afternoon, after three days, I tested my first batch. Brilliant!! The texture was just how I like it. Not too dry. My girlfriend had never tasted biltong but she'd listened to me raving on about it for years. She was most impressed. Just waiting now to hear how my son's first batch is going! This is the first time I've had biltong since 1986 so you can imagine how pleased I am! Thought I'd died and gone to heaven! Best regards to all the Biltong Team,

John Renwick England

Biltong Makers

John Renwick England

Dear Biltong Team, Yesterday afternoon, after three days, I tested my first batch. Brilliant!! The texture was just how I like it. Not too dry. My girlfriend had never tasted biltong but she'd listened to me raving on about it for years. She was most impressed. Just waiting now to hear how my son's first batch is going! This is the first time I've had biltong since 1986 so you can imagine how pleased I am! Thought I'd died and gone to heaven! Best regards to all the Biltong Team,

Worth its weight in gold!

Hello Biltong Team,

So far my husband and I have been sharing a machine with friends and they want it back now, so I've decided it's time to get our own one. We can't go without biltong for too long! I make a batch and by the time we've eaten it, the next one is ready. It's definitely worth its weight in gold!

Georgie Neubauer England

Biltong Makers

Georgie Neubauer England

Hello Biltong Team, So far my husband and I have been sharing a machine with friends and they want it back now, so I've decided it's time to get our own one. We can't go without biltong for too long! I make a batch and by the time we've eaten it, the next one is ready. It's definitely worth its weight in gold!

Fabulous product

Dear Biltongmakers,

I would like to congratulate you on a fabulous product. I received a biltongmaker a while ago for my birthday and, to be honest, it has not been switched off since then. I have tried Springbok, Beef, Kudu and even Kangaroo and have to say that is was amazing. Neighbours, friends and family can`t seem to get enough. Thank you very much.

Richard Rust, England

Biltong Makers

Richard Rust, England

Dear Biltongmakers, I would like to congratulate you on a fabulous product. I received a biltongmaker a while ago for my birthday and, to be honest, it has not been switched off since then. I have tried Springbok, Beef, Kudu and even Kangaroo and have to say that is was amazing. Neighbours, friends and family can`t seem to get enough. Thank you very much.

A very professional organization

Hi there!

Thanks for your speedy reply. The Biltong Team seems to be a very professional organization and I will gladly follow your advice. If you have any extra advice or hints I would appreciate it.

Lawrence Israel

Biltong Makers

Lawrence Israel

Hi there! Thanks for your speedy reply. The Biltong Team seems to be a very professional organization and I will gladly follow your advice. If you have any extra advice or hints I would appreciate it.

Receiving orders

Hi Lo,

Just to let you know that my last lot of "billies" went down like a house on fire! I have subsequently received orders from at least 6 friends and each wants 2 kilos!!!

Mark Zetzer Melbourne, Australia

Biltong Makers

Mark Zetzer Melbourne, Australia

Hi Lo, Just to let you know that my last lot of "billies" went down like a house on fire! I have subsequently received orders from at least 6 friends and each wants 2 kilos!!!
Biltong Makers

We look forward to hearing from you
+27 (0)21 789-1856
Paddock Drive
Zilvermyn Equestrian Village
Noordhoek Views
Western Cape
South Africa

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