What You Need To Know About Bobotie | History Of Bobotie | Variations Of Bobotie | How To Prepare Bobotie | Ingredients | Instructions | Origin Of Bobotie | Top South African Cuisines

What You Need To Know About Bobotie


Many people consider bobotie to be the national dish of South Africa. And despite the long list of ingredients, it is quite easy to prepare.

The dish itself bears a resemblance to the Greek moussaka or the British shepherd’s pie.

So, if you like these dishes, I’m sure you’ll like Bobotie too.

Basically, the bobotie is a mixture of minced meat, dried fruit and nuts that are covered in a mixture of eggs and milk. The dish is then finished in the oven.

History Of Bobotie

The exact origin of the dish remains indistinct until today. However, it is documented that the Dutch settlers brought with them a similar dish in South Africa in the 17th century.

The recipe was adopted in particular by the Cape Malay community and then adapted to use the spices and ingredients available locally. The word bobotie comes from the Malay word “boemboe”, which means “curry spice”. Given the exotic flavor of the dish, this would make sense.

The exact ingredients may vary slightly from the recipe to the recipe. Families tend to have their own particular version. Some people like to use more peanuts than just raisins and others prefer to leave the almonds out.

Variations Of Bobotie

Traditionally the bobotie is made of lamb or minced meat. The lamb has a specific flavor that everyone does not like and I find that the beef is a more enveloping taste for everyone in the family.

In terms of spiciness, the bobotie is an exotically seasoned but not spicy dish. Of course, if you can not live without your pounds you can add a pinch, but it should not be dominant in any way.

Together with raisins you can also use dried apricots, cut into smaller pieces.

If you do not like the idea of ​​mixed almonds with chopped, you can leave them out or replace them with other nuts. Some people do like topping their bobots with nuts. But if someone suffers from a nut allergy, it is better that you omit the walnuts.

Another welcome addition is ginger. Some of the early recipes included ginger and some families still use it. Also, never underestimate a good pinch of powdered cinnamon.

How To Prepare Bobotie

Preparation Time – 30 minutes
Cooking Time – 60 minutes
Total Time – 1 hour, 30 minutes


1 slice of white bread
250 ml (1 cup) of milk
1 kg beef chop (2.2 lbs)
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
Sultana 125 ml (½ cup) or raisins without seeds
Scalded almonds 125 ml (½ cup), whole or chipped
Apricot jam 15ml (1 tablespoon)
Fruit chutney 15 ml (1 tablespoon)
30 ml (2 tablespoons) of lemon juice
30 ml (2 tablespoons) of curry powder
10ml (2 teaspoons) of turmeric
10ml (2 teaspoons) of salt
15ml (1 tablespoon) of oil
3 large eggs
4 bay leaves


Dip the bread into the milk, then squeeze it and store the milk.
In a large bowl mix the bread, beef, onion, sultanas, almonds, jam, chutney, lemon juice, curry powder, turmeric and salt.
Heat the oil in a large pan and lightly brown the meat mixture. Pour into a ovenproof saucepan.
Beat the eggs with the reserved milk and pour the mixture over the meat.
Garnish the top of the mixture with the bay leaves and bake at 180 ° C / 160 ° C marking fan / gas 4 for 50 minutes or until set.
Serve with Geelrys (yellow rice) and vegetables.


If you are lactose intolerant you can use alternatives such as almonds, soy or rice milk.

Please follow and like us:

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.