What could warm the cockles of your heart more than this spicy creation by Jan Braai, aka Jan Scannelli and founder of South Africa’s beloved National Braai Day? (For those unfortunates abroad not weaned directly onto charcoal, a braai = a South African barbeque and for many South Africans it verges on a spiritual experience…)
Photo: Toby Murphy  |  Stylist: Jules Mercer |  Photo courtesy Quivertree Publications

What you need (serves 4)

2 tbsp olive oil

2 red onions, sliced or chopped

2 sweet red peppers

2 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped

1 tsp chilli powder or cayenne pepper

2 tbsp paprika

2 tomatoes, chopped

2 tbsp tomato paste

½ cup beef stock

1 kg steak mince

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp black pepper

4 hamburger rolls, buttered

sour cream, to serve

chopped fresh parsley, to serve

What you do

Heat the oil in a pan or potjie and fry the onions and peppers for about 4 minutes until they start to soften, then throw in the garlic.

Add the chilli powder or cayenne pepper and paprika and stir to release their flavours.

Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and beef stock, and stir to combine. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and allow the flavours to develop and the sauce to thicken.

Check the pan or potjie every now and then to stir the sauce and make sure it doesn’t cook dry or burn.

Meanwhile, wet your hands with water and divide the mince into 4 equal sized patties.

Shape them into rounds, flattening them out quite well, as they will shrink a little during the braaiing process.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper on both sides just before or during braaiing.

Braai them over very hot coals for 8 minutes, turning only once.

Remove the patties from the braai and rest them for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, briefly toast the insides of the buttered rolls on the braai for bonus points.

Assemble the burger as follows: roll, patty, sauce, dollop of sour cream, chopped parsley.

Serve immediately!

Jan Braai, creator of the Braai Freedom Fighter Burger  |  Photo: Toby Murphy  |  Stylist: Jules Mercer  |  Photo courtesy Quivertree Publications
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Get more local culinary inspiration from The Great South African Cookbook Cook (Quivertree Publications)

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