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Bobootie 2.JPG
Place of origin South Africa
Main ingredients Minced meat
Cookbook: Bobotie  Media: Bobotie

Bobotie is a well-known[1] South African dish consisting of spiced minced meat baked with an egg-based topping.[2]

Origins and preparation[edit]

Bobotie is thought to have originated from bobotok,[3] an Indonesian dish which consisted of meat with a custard topping that was cooked in a pan of water until the egg mixture set.[4] Colonists from the Dutch East India Company colonies in Batavia probably introduced bobotie to South Africa. The first recipe for bobotie appeared in a Dutch cookbook in 1609.[4] Afterwards, it was taken to South Africa and adopted by the Cape Malay community.[2] It is also made with curry powder leaving it with a slight "tang".[5] It is often served with Sambal.[6] The dish has been known in the Cape of Good Hope since the 17th century, when it was made with a mixture of mutton and pork.[7]


Today, bobotie is much more likely to be made with beef or lamb, although pork lends the dish extra moisture. Early recipes incorporated ginger, marjoram and lemon rind; the introduction of curry powder has simplified the recipe somewhat but the basic concept remains the same. Some recipes also call for chopped onions to be added to the mixture. Traditionally, bobotie incorporates dried fruit like raisins or sultanas. It is often garnished with walnuts, chutney and bananas.[8] Although not particularly spicy, the dish incorporates a variety of flavours that can add complexity. For example, the dried fruit (usually apricots and raisins/sultanas) contrasts the curry flavouring. The texture of the dish is also complex, the baked egg mixture topping complementing the milk-soaked bread which adds moisture to the dish.

Bobotie elsewhere in Africa[edit]

The Bobotie recipe was transported by South African settlers to colonies all over Africa. Today, recipes for it can be found that originated in white settler communities in Kenya, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Zambia. There is a variation that was popular among the 7,000 Boer settlers who settled in the Chubut River Valley in Argentina in the early 20th century, in which the bobotie mixture is packed inside a large pumpkin, which is then baked until tender.

In culture[edit]

2008 Augusta National Champions Dinner[edit]

Bobotie was selected by 2008 Masters golf champion and South African native Trevor Immelman as the featured menu item for Augusta National's annual "Champions Dinner" in April 2009. Each year, the reigning champion at The Masters golf tournament, played every year in Augusta, Georgia, hosts the gathering and tends to create a menu featuring delicacies from his home region. [9]

2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival[edit]

South African Bobotie is one of the featured items on the menu; it is also served with turkey and mushrooms. It is listed as gluten free. It is also on the every day menu at the buffet restaurant Boma at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge. [10]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]