Chuck the chops! Seven meats S

Chuck the chops! Seven meats South Africans have to cook this Christmas

Don’t just lob the usual on the braai when the 25th comes around. The festive season is supposed to be special, so make an effort and you’ll be rewarded. Plus… leftovers!

Chuck the chops! Seven meats S

1. Turkey

Let’s start all traditional, shall we? “It’s boring” we hear you cry. “But the meat is dry” we hear you moan. Nonsense. Not if it’s cooked with a bit of love.

Buy the best quality bird you can afford, cook it nice and slowly, don’t waste any of the pan juices and don’t skimp on the stuffing.

And yes, of course you can braai it if you want to!

Top leftovers tip: Use instead of chicken in any curry you like.

2. Gammon

A Christmas cracker if ever there was one. Roast it with a glaze of honey and mustard, plus a few cloves and any other herbs and aromatics that tickle your festive fancy. Serve it alongside your turkey or, hey, just cook one anyway.

Top leftovers tip: Slapped between two hunks of white bread for the ultimate sandwich, obviously!

3. Lamb


Still worried about dry meat? Allow us to point you towards a fatty joint of lamb. The rich, dark meat will go perfectly with all your Christmas veg – make sure you use all those juices for the ultimate gravy.

Top leftovers tip: Use it for the best shepherd’s pie you’ve ever had.

4. Chicken

Turkey for cowards. Only joking! It’s a manageable, known quantity which you can braai or roast in the oven. Plus you get your traditional white meat of the season and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg and a beak.

Top leftovers tip: The centrepiece of a healthy post-Christmas salad, if you’re feeling guilty.

5. Pork Belly

We’re all allowed to indulge at this time of year – and this cut doesn’t have to break the bank either. A nice idea is to dip it in some brine for up to 24 hours before you slow right down and let it fall apart on your plate.

Top leftovers tip: Chop up finely and use as a twist on a ragu with pasta.

6. Beef

roast beef

If you have any British heritage, why not celebrate with a properly marbled piece of cow. This also gives you a glorious opportunity to indulge in some classic Yorkshire puddings while you’re at it. Mooooosic to our ears.

Top leftovers tip: Has to be a casserole, yes?

7. Tongue

While yours is in a twist after pulling your cracker, how about bringing out a bit more of the bovine, just for something different. Not for everyone, we know, but it’s in the spirit of eating the whole animal and comes pretty cheap. Don’t be shy.

Top leftovers tip: Throw any scraps into the pot to add depth to a broth or beef stock.