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Bobotie Recipe

A South African dish, consisting of minced meat , flavoured with curry powder, then topped with an egg and milk sauce. It is a blend of Dutch cooking with that of Cape Malay immigrants. Smarter versions can include dried apricots and flaked almonds, a fish version is not unknown.

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For a generous 4:

1 big Onion, peeled and chopped
25g/1 oz Butter
1 medium clove of Garlic, peeled and finely-chopped
450g/1 lb Minced Beef or Lamb
1 tablespoon White Flour
150ml/6 fl oz Beef or Lamb stock
1 heaped tablespoon (20ml) Curry Powder
the juice of 1 Lemon
1 tablespoon chopped Almonds (optional)
a handful of Dried Apricots – again optional - (soaked for a few hours, unless the ready-to-eat variety; then roughly-chopped (optional, but particularly good if using lamb mince)
6 drops of Almond Essence
a big pinch of dried Mixed Herbs
2 Eggs
300ml/ ½ pint Milk
Salt and freshly-ground Black Pepper
1 Bay Leaf


1. Melt the butter in a large pan of a gentle heat, then add the chopped onion, ‘sweat’ the onion until it’s translucent – about 3 minutes.
2. Add the chopped garlic and curry powder and stir in.
3. Increase the heat to medium and add the mince. Stir with a wooden spoon to break it up – otherwise it might form lumps.
4. Add the mixed herbs and flour – then mix again.
5. Add the stock, the lemon juice, almond essence and the almonds and apricot pieces (both or neither) and again mix in.
6. Add a little salt and plenty of pepper to the mixture. Transfer the mixture to a baking dish.
7. Beat the eggs with the milk and pour the liquid over the top of the meat mixture.
8. Float a bay leaf on top and cook the bobotie in an oven 180C/359F/Gas 4 for about 45 minutes – or until it’s bubbling, and golden in colour.

Serve with rice or mashed potato.

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