Home FOOD All Things Food & Wine Light up the braai

Light up the braai

Spring is here and there is no better way to celebrate than with a good old braai.

We catch up with Alberton’s own braai father Corné Borman at his guesthouse Borisimos in Brackenhurst, for an afternoon of sharing ‘I am ready for a second helping’ food and ample delightful discussions around the process of smoking and braaiing. Corné cooked up a meal fit for kings and shared his recipes with our readers. Do try it and simply enjoy!

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STARTER

Norwegian salmon smoked and blackened with cajun spice and Rooibos tea

Served with grilled fennel, fire-roasted beetroot and Aji Amirillo chilli sauce

What you need:

300 g Norwegian salmon fillet; Cajun spice; ¼ cup semi-coarse salt (kosher or sea); 2 tablespoons garlic powder; 2 tablespoons onion; 2 tablespoons dried thyme; 2 tablespoons dried oregano; 2 tablespoons sweet paprika; 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper; 1 tablespoon freshly ground white pepper; 1 to 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper.

Method:

Combine the above ingredients, generously season the top of the fillet and keep the rest of the mixture for future use in any chicken or seafood dish.

Open two bags of South African Rooibos tea and sprinkle on top of the spice. Rest for 1-3 hours. Using cold smoke with apricot wood or other fruit trees, smoke the fillet on a non-stick mat for 20-30 minutes without cooking the fish as such and let it cool down and rest while prepping the garnish.

Garnish:

Brush two whole beetroots with oil and season. Wrap in foil and cook on the side of the fire. Watch that you do not get them too hot as they are cooking in themselves with concentrated flavours and could burn easily.

Once cooked and cooled down, peel and cut into cubes. Drizzle with olive oil and season. Trim and blanch baby fennel. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Grill over hot coals and set aside.

Aji Amarillo sauce

1/2 cup Aji Amirillo chillies; 30ml oil;

1 Bay leaf, 1 clove garlic – In a pan roast chillies with oil, bay leaf and garlic;

2 eggs, boiled hard (7-10 minutes) and peeled. ½ cup water; 10ml salt;

5ml mustard; ¼ cup vinegar; ¼ cup sour cream – combine all of the

above in a food processor and liquidise till smooth.

Plating:

Make a fire with good wood. While this is happening, you can arrange the prepared garnishes on the plate. When there are some coals but still a bit of flame, use a “braai mat” on top of your grill. Melt a bit of butter. Lift the fish and place it crust down onto the mat until a nice colour is achieved. Turn over and crisp up the skin. Serve on a garnished plate.

Drizzle with Aji Amarillo sauce and sprinkle some chilli salt on the plate.

MAIN COURSE

Mac & cheese stuffed chicken

Served with Rooibos-infused and Brafia BBQ Garbanzo beans, brinjal chips, fire-roasted butternut and deep-fried leeks.

What you need:

1 whole chicken, fresh – debone the chest cavity out, legs and wings bones intact. Season meat side with Brafia Gin Rub and set aside for stuffing.

Stuffing:

40g butter; 20g flour; 250ml milk; 100ml cream; Salt, pepper and pinch of nutmeg; 1 bunch leeks – trim roots, slice white section and wash thoroughly. Thinly julienne darker top section of leeks, rinse, dry and deep fry at 160°C till golden and crispy. 250ml grated cheese; 250g macaroni – simmered with salted water till soft.

Sauté sliced whites of leeks in butter, add flour and cook for one minute, add milk and cream in a steady stream while stirring to dissolve the flour, bring to the simmer, season and cool down. Add the grated cheese. Add to the cooked macaroni.

Fill the deboned cavity with the mixture and tie it up so that it stays inside while cooking. Cook hot and fast in 150 – 160°C with an offset fire in your fire oven of choice till cooked to an inside temp of 72°C

Garnish:

500g Garbanzo beans (chickpeas) soaked in water overnight, cook till tender in 1.5l salted water with 2 bags Rooibos tea and set aside; 100g butter; 250ml Brafia Braai Master Sauce – froth butter and toast Garbanzo beans till golden brown, add sauce and cooked till glazed; 1 butternut, peeled, halved, seeded, seasoned, add some fresh herbs, drizzle with olive oil, season and wrap in foil. Cook on side of fire till tender. Brown over coals if colour is not great yet; 1 brinjal, thinly sliced, deep-fried till golden brown, seasoned; Cut strings around the chicken and arrange all the items for serving.

DESSERT

Flaming Rooibos moonshine crème brûlée

What you need:

500ml fresh cream; 6 egg yolks; 80ml sugar; 3 bags Rooibos tea – Extract tea flavour with 300ml boiling water, remove bags and simmer over low heat till concentrated to 50 – 60ml; 90ml sugar – for caramelising on top of brûlée.

Method:

Heat cream in a saucepan while dissolving the sugar, add concentrate of Rooibos, sieve liquid and pour into 150ml ramekins. Preheat oven to 150°C. Place ramekins in an oven pan and fill with hot water till half of the depth of ramekins so they can cook in the water bath without curdling. Cover with foil, pierce the top and bake for 30-40 minutes. Once it is set like jelly, remove it from the bath and cool down.

Flaming Rooibos liqueur

What you need:

250ml high proof white alcohol i.e. Moonshine of 50% or more; 2 Rooibos tea bags;

80g pure honey; 75ml evaporated milk or cream; This process carries a high risk of igniting. Please take care…

Method:

In a slow cooker add the Rooibos tea bags to the alcohol. Let it simmer for not more than a couple of minutes while covered. Boil it too long and all the alcohol evaporates. Bring any fire or match close by and you’ll sure have fire… set aside to cool completely with bags inside.

Use 150 ml of Rooibos alcohol and combine that with the honey and evaporated milk or cream. Shake well and refrigerate.

Plating:

Finish all plating and decoration for six ramekins. Use the extracted Rooibos tea bags as a garnish with some fresh flowers. Pour the Rooibos cream liqueur into serving glasses and place on plated plates. Spoon 15ml of sugar evenly on top of each set custard. Spritz the sugar with very little water to prevent hot bullets of sugar blowing onto you while burning the tops. Burn the top evenly with the gas torch while turning the bowl so to allow the sugar to cover the top completely. The colour should be dark caramel but not bitterly burnt. While sugar is still hot, add a dash (7ml) of the Rooibos moonshine on top and set alight. Send to the table while burning taking care not to burn yourself or your guests…

* Text: CORNÉ BORMAN. Photos: CARINA VAN DER WALT.

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