What’s cooking today: Roast pork sirloin with a fynbos rub

What’s cooking today: Roast pork sirloin with a fynbos rub
Roast pork sirloin with a fynbos rub, garnished with kapokbos (snowbush) sprigs. The jar contains dried cancer bush leaves. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

A boneless sirloin with a fat cap but without crackling makes a superb roast and a great way to show off this fynbos rub.

My experimental fynbos rub for a roast pork sirloin worked wonderfully. It smelt and tasted of the veld. This recipe for a fynbos rub for meat (in this case, a slab of pork sirloin) accompanies this column. But you can use the rub for other meat such as a steak or a roast chicken.


1.2 kg pork sirloin in one piece, with its fat cap intact

Rooibos culinary salt to taste

A glass of dry or semi-sweet white wine

For the baste:

3 Tbsp fynbos honey

2 Tbsp sherry vinegar

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp olive oil

For the fynbos rub:

½ tsp dried Cape Mountain Sage

½ tsp dried cancer bush (kankerbos) leaves

½ tsp rooibos herb

½ tsp honeybush herb

¼ tsp dried buchu leaves

½ tsp dried rhino bush (renosterbos) leaves

½ tsp black pepper


Start five or six hours before you intend to cook the meat.

Rinse the pork sirloin under cold water and pat dry with kitchen paper. Measure the dried fynbos herbs and spoon them into a small bowl or ramekin and mix thoroughly, with the black pepper. Rub the fynbos mixture all over the meat including the fat cap, as evenly as possible. Salt the joint all over with rooibos salt. Place it in the fridge.

Bring the pork sirloin to room temperature at least an hour before you’re ready to cook it. Preheat the oven to 170℃.

Mix together the honey, sherry vinegar, mustard and olive oil for the baste.

Don’t baste the meat just yet. Pour a little olive oil into a heavy oven pan on the stove top and brown the meat well on all sides, especially the fat cap.

Now baste the sirloin evenly all over, including the fat cap. Retain the rest of the baste to brush onto the meat three or four times while it cooks.

Roast in a preheated 170°C oven for 25 minutes per 450 g; my 1.2 kg sirloin was in the oven for 67 minutes. Then I turned off the oven and left the door open for 20 minutes for it to rest. Once I’d removed the meat to a board (on a tray to catch any drippings), I deglazed the pan with wine, reduced it and strained it to serve with the meat. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if, on tasting it, it needs those.

I served it with buttered cauliflower mash and button mushrooms cooked on a high heat with salt, black pepper, lemon juice and olive oil. DM/TGIFood

@southafricanfynbos on Instagram / online at / email [email protected]

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.


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