Well Christmas has been and gone and now we eagerly await the arrival of 2010! We have our whole family with us for the next three weeks or so, our son, daughter, son-in-law and our two lovely grandsons are all visiting from England so these are extremely happy times for us and we are spoiling them like mad.For our first welcoming braai I did some rump steak "tasties" as a starter, buy the best piece of lazy aged rump that you can find and rub it with olive oil, sprinkle with Aromat, garlic flakes and course ground black pepper and leave it to marinate for a bit while you prepare the fire.
It is best done quickly over a hot fire with a bit of flame and if you like it medium rare as we do you must take care not to braai it for too long, it will continue to cook for a while after you remove it from the fire so make a slice into the thick part to see what it looks like, if it still looks quite rare then remove it. Remember if it is too rare for your taste you can always put it back to cook a bit longer but if it is over cooked you cannot undo it.Cut into slices and salt to taste for a delicious starter and watch out for the juice dripping from your elbows!
Next was "Chicken parcels" and for these you can use virtually any vegetable that you can think of to include in the parcels as long as you slice the hard vegetables such as potatoes, butternut and carrots etc. quite thin.Smear a dab of butter on the tinfoil, and for this use a heavy grade foil, and then layer the potato slices and the butternut over the butter. Next place the chicken portions on top and sprinkle with your favourite herbs and spices, mine is Aromat. I then added chopped onion, green and yellow peppers and whole button mushrooms but here you can add your other vegetables.
Drizzle about a teaspoon of olive oil, salt and pepper to taste and then seal the parcel very well, taking care not to tear the tinfoil. Place the parcels on the grid quite high over moderate coals to start with and leave them for about an hour. I rotate the parcels to evenly distribute the heat but you don't need to turn them over, keep adding coals to maintain the heat.
It wont be long before you can smell the wonderful aroma emanating from the parcels and I usually lower the grid after an hour is up. At some stage you will have to carefully open one of the parcels to check that the chicken is cooked through, once it is ready serve with rice or a nice fresh loaf of "Ciabatta" bread to sop up the wonderful gravy.
These are delicious and very convenient once the initial preparation is over and we do them quite often. There will be many more braais and potjies over the next couple of weeks so I hope you don't mind me sharing them with you.
I hope that your New Year festivities are very enjoyable and if you are celebrating as we are, then leave the motorbike parked in the garage - stay safe and may 2010 bring you and yours all you could wish for.