The concept of safari is rapidly changing in South Africa: many private game reserves and lodges are realising that whilst the wildlife and environment are the major attraction, the really innovative establishments are offering learning experiences as part of their stays.
One that crossed our desk recently is that of Kwandwe in the Eastern Cape, who now offer a Campfire Cooking Course as part of any three night stay there.
South Africans of all races are renowned for their passion (and skill) in outdoor cooking and on this course, you get to learn how to prepare, accompany and present an entire al fresco dining experience. Best of all, you get to eat what you make!
You work with sustainable meat, mainly venison, such as impala, kudu, ostrich, warthog and gemsbok and also vegetarian alternatives: you also learn how to prepare traditional
accompaniments such as stoke (or ‘pot’) bread, mielie (corn) bread, farm butter, krummel pap (crumbly porridge made from maize meal) with chakalaka (spicy tomato relish). Included is a hands-on lesson on how to make boerewors, a type of lightly spiced sausage popular in South African cuisine and traditionally cooked as a key ingredient of any braai. You’ll also learn to brew ‘moer koffie’, coffee prepared in a tin pot over an open fire and how (and where) to forage for edible plants found on the reserve (such as spekboom, prickly pear and aloe) how these are used to make a refreshing sorbet or drink.
What’s particularly nice is that children (of all ages) are welcome on the Campfire Cooking course and the team makes particular provision for them in terms of safe outdoor cooking methods and simple dishes they can prepare themselves.
The Campfire Cooking package can be added on to a minimum three-night stay at any of Kwandwe’s accommodation options. The cost is R 18 000 (US$1 300) for the experience – this includes private tuition time with the Kwandwe culinary team and all ingredients for the cooking course (which you get to eat!) and drinks.