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4 Mouth-watering dishes to braai this summer

Summer is here! That means family get-togethers around the fire are on the horizon. From smoked chicken and classic snoek to halloumi and vegetable kebabs – here are four recipes to try on the hot coals.

1. Beer-smoked chicken

Serves 6

Cooking time 2 hours


For the chicken

1 whole chicken

330ml can of beer

For the marinade

150g butter

3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

3 sprigs thyme, chopped

1 lemon, juiced

For the dry rub

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp chilli flakes

1 tsp crushed garlic

1 tsp smoked paprika

Salt and black pepper


  1. Prepare a smoker or kettle braai by packing the coals so that there is ample room for the chicken to sit in the middle.
  2. Combine all marinade ingredients and rub the mixture under the skin of the chicken.
  3. Combine the dry rub ingredients and rub the mixture over the chicken.
  4. Open the beer and insert it into the cavity of the chicken. Place the chicken in the middle of the braai so it doesn’t cook over direct heat.
  5. Add smoking chips to the coals, close the lid and smoke for 1½ hours.

2. Apricot-butter braaied snoek

Serves 6

Cooking time 90 minutes


1 whole snoek, filleted

Coarse salt and black pepper

150g butter

2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

125ml smooth apricot jam

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

2 tsp Cape Malay curry powder

Splash white wine (optional)

Olive oil


  1. Sprinkle the snoek with salt and leave for 20–30 minutes. Rinse off and pat dry.
  2. Cook the butter and garlic together in a pan until the butter is foamy. Add apricot jam, lemon zest, curry powder and wine. Stir through and a squeeze of lemon juice and pepper. Remove from heat.

Coat the snoek in oil so it doesn’t stick to the grid. Braai for about 15 minutes, basting with the apricot butter and turning frequently. Serve with leftover apricot butter.

3. Halloumi and vegetable kebabs

Serves 4

Cooking time 15 minutes


250g halloumi, cubed

1 red onion, peeled, quartered and petals separated

1 red pepper, cut into squares

1 green pepper, cut into squares

⅓ cup olive oil

Salt and black pepper

2 tbsp finely chopped mint, plus leaves to garnish

2 tsp honey

1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar


  1. Heat a braai pan over medium coals.
  2. Toss the halloumi, onion and red and green peppers with 1 tbsp of olive oil. Season. Thread onto skewers in 2–3 layers.
  3. Whisk together the remaining olive oil with the mint, honey and balsamic vinegar. Season.
  4. Put the kebabs on the braai grid for 2 minutes on each side. Serve with the mint dressing and garnish with extra mint leaves.

4. Chargrilled steak with chimichurri and shoestring fries

Serves 4–6

Total time 30 minutes


For the steak

2 rump steaks (700 g each)



Olive oil

For the chimichurri

2 garlic cloves, finely minced

1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

40g finely chopped parsley

1 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp coarse salt


3 tbsp red wine vinegar

1/3 cup olive oil

For the shoestring fries

6 potatoes, washed and peeled

1/4 cup flour

Oil for frying

Sea salt


For the steak

  1. Pat down your steaks using some paper towels. Season both sides of each steak evenly with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a little olive oil and massage into the steak. Cover and set aside. Allow steaks to cool to room temperature before cooking.
  2. Braai your steak for 3–4 minutes to create a caramelised exterior. Once the cooking side is nice and brown, use a pair of tongs to turn the steak onto its other side. Cook for another
    3–4 minutes to medium rare (or your desired doneness).
  3. Remove steak from the heat and set on a wooden board to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

For the chimichurri

  1. Add the garlic, chilli, parsley, oregano, salt and a crack of pepper to a bowl. Mix and press together the ingredients using a spoon.
  2. Add the vinegar and oil and stir through. Taste and season as needed. Set aside until serving.

For the shoestring fries

  1. Using a mandoline slicer (or a very sharp knife), cut the potatoes into very thin slices. Once sliced, use a knife to cut long thin rectangles to make fries. Place the cut potatoes into a bowl of water while you’re busy with the rest of the preparations to prevent browning.
  2. Heat a pot of oil until very hot (test by adding one fry to the oil). If it starts sizzling, the oil is ready.
  3. Toss the fries in flour to coat lightly.
  4. Add the fries to the oil in batches and cook until golden and crispy. Be careful to not overcook or they may burn.
  5. Remove from the oil using a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel to drain. Season the crispy fries with a sprinkle of sea salt.

To serve

Slice your steak and top with a drizzle of chimichurri and crispy shoestring fries on the side. Add some mayonnaise or tomato sauce to have with your fries. Enjoy!

Photography: Peet Mocke/, Shutterstock

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