Lockdown Recipe of the Day: Ribbok & Dried Fruit Potjie

Lockdown Recipe of the Day: Ribbok & Dried Fruit Potjie
Ribbok fillet and venison wors potjie. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

This recipe, which I made last weekend, is for ribbok (rhebuck) fillet medallions and chunks of venison sausage, cooked together with dried fruit and sweet spices.

In the Karoo, in winter, once in a while a neighbour or farmer friend will pitch up bearing gifts. My buurman Johan, from across the road, arrived the other day with lovely ribbok fillets and a coil of the superb venison wors he makes himself. At the weekend they became the heart of a lovely venison potjie rich with spices and winter comfort.


(For a potjie that feeds 6 to 8)

Glug of olive oil

2 medium onions, chopped

1 stick celery, diced

3 or 4 fat garlic cloves, chopped

3 carrots, diced

1 star anise

6 cardamom pods, whole

1 stick cinnamon (or cassia bark)

1 cup dried pears, apricots and peaches, sliced or whole

115 g tomato paste

1 x 400 ml can chopped tomatoes

800 g venison fillet, cut into medallions

1 coil of quality venison sausage, cut into chunks

100 ml red wine

Salt and pepper


Light a fire in good time before you start cooking, and keep it going so that you always have coals available.

Add olive oil to your potjie and put it on your braai surface with hot coals underneath it. Add the chopped and diced onions, garlic, celery and carrots, and the cinnamon, star anise and cardamom pods, and simmer with the lid off for about 10 minutes, stirring often.

Add the tomato paste and stir well, simmer for five more minutes, stirring, then add the chopped tomatoes, dried fruit and red wine and season with salt and pepper. Stir well.

Put the lid on the potjie, ensure there are hot coals underneath and also a few coals on top of the lid, and keep it at a gentle simmer for two to three hours. Add more coles as necessary.

If, once the meat is perfectly tender and the flavours have deepened beautifully, the liquid in the pot is still runny, take the lid off and let it simmer down until the liquid attains a sauce-like quality. Serve with rice, mashed potato, polenta or good ol’ pap.

TGIFood Tip: You can, of course, substitute any venison your neighbour happens to bestow on you. Should you be unlucky enough not to have such a generous neighbour, or not to live in the Karoo, see what the butcher has in the back room. DM/TGIFood

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