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What’s cooking today: Braaied tenderstem broccoli and...



What’s cooking today: Braaied tenderstem broccoli and stuffed gem squash

Tony Jackman’s braaied broccoli and stuffed gem squash. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

The main event at a braai is one thing, but you can be inventive with some cool side dishes as well.

Not everything at every braai has to be a foil-wrapped potato and the ubiquitous green (and red) salad. Instead of potatoes, stuff gem squash and cook them in foil in the coals. And mix a baste for tenderstem broccoli to braai those too.

If you’re cooking for a crowd, multiply these quantities as needed. The following feeds two as side dishes; four at a push.


1 punnet tenderstem broccoli

2 gem squash

2 Tbsp sweet chilli sauce

Juice and grated zest of ½ a lemon (for the broccoli)

2 Tbsp olive oil

125 g cream cheese

125 ml full cream plain yoghurt

Juice and grated zest of ½ a lemon (for the gem squash)

½ tsp cumin seeds, toasted

Salt and black pepper to taste for both dishes


Toast the cumin seeds in a dry pan on a moderate heat until they just start to smoke. Crush or grind them.

In a bowl or bakkie, mix together the sweet chilli sauce, olive oil and juice and zest of ½ a lemon, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Trim the hard ends of the broccoli stems and douse them in the baste.

In a second bowl, mix together the cream cheese, yoghurt, remaining lemon juice and zest, and ground toasted cumin, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Halve the gem squash and remove the seeds. Spoon the cream cheese mixture into the cavities. Wrap tightly in a double layer of foil.

I own a dinky long, narrow braai grid (thanks to my family and Christmas) into which I put all the broccoli stems, packing them tightly. I suggest improvising with whatever you have.

Braai the foil-wrapped stuffed gems in the coals until tender, about 40 minutes should do it. Turn now and then.

Braai the broccoli in a suitable grid on hot coals, turning frequently, until tender. DM/TGIFood

Tony Jackman is Galliova Food Champion 2021. His book, foodSTUFF, is available in the DM Shop. Buy it here

Follow Tony Jackman on Instagram @tony_jackman_cooks. Share your versions of his recipes with him on Instagram and he’ll see them and respond.

SUBSCRIBE to TGIFood here. Also visit the TGIFood platform, a repository of all of our food writing. 

Mervyn Gers Ceramics supplies dinnerware for the styling of some TGIFood shoots. For more information, click here.


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