The Financial Mail asked Darren Badenhorst, executive chef at The Restaurant at Grande Provence Heritage Wine Estate, Franschhoek:

What kind of meal are you preparing for your family this Christmas?

I will be treating other families at Grande Provence this Christmas, but if I were with my family, it would be our normal spread of roast turkey, pork, chicken, beer, slow bakes of oxtail and curries, and an abundance of fresh salads and vegetables.

Compared with the traditional Christmas menu, what is a quintessential SA dish?

With SA being so diverse, we see a variety of ingredients and cooking methods reaching the Christmas table. In Durban, beautiful curries will be present, for example, while crayfish will be a hit on the Cape West Coast. Different takes on turkey are always a feature, as are truly SA braaied elements such as lamb leg or venison. From a dessert point of view, I doubt there are any SA Christmas tables without malva pudding.

What staples will be in your fridge or cupboards this holiday and why?

My fig trees will be in fruit soon, so there will be jars of preserves and jams, along with French cheese and homemade breads. Simple yet delicious.

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