Bloemfontein Lamb Curry

Taste Experience Bloemfontein

This Bloemfontein Lamb Curry is taken from Shisanyama, Braai Recipes from South Africa by Jan Braai (Bookstorm) R345, from good bookstores nationwide.


This recipe originally belonged to Harri, who is from India but worked in Bloemfontein. He taught it to his neighbour, who in turn gave it to Ryno, who sent it to me. Ryno uses this recipe when he takes part in potjiekos competitions and says he’s won various accolades with it.

Taste this amazing Bloemfontein Curry with this recipe taken from Shisanyama, Braai Recipes from South Africa by Jan Braai


(feeds 6)


2 kg lamb knuckle or neck pieces

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

1 lemon (juice)

500 ml amasi (fermented milk otherwise known as maas)

2 tsp turmeric


2 tots olive oil

3 onions (chopped)

3 cloves

3 cardamom pods

3 bay leaves

1 tot garam masala

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground cinnamon

3 garlic cloves (crushed and finely chopped)

fresh ginger, equal in volume to the garlic (grated)

2 fresh chillies (chopped)

2 potatoes (cubed)

2 carrots (sliced)

2 tomatoes (chopped)

2 tots apricot jam


1. Put the meat in a bowl and add the salt and pepper. Toss well and now add the lemon juice, amasi and turmeric. Mix everything together and let it chill out until such time as a future step of this recipe calls for it to come and play. It can chill out like this for a few minutes but also for a few hours, in which case you need to let it chill out inside your fridge.

2. Add the oil and onions to your currently clean and empty potjie. Give that potjie some flaming gees by putting it on your fire. Fry the onions until translucent.

3. Now add all of the spices, including the garlic, ginger and chilli, and fry for a minute or two until they smell fragrant and start to brown. Proceed to the next step before the spices burn.

4. Add the meat and all its marinating friends to the potjie. Mix it all and bring the meat to a simmer. Let it be in this state of blissful simmer for around 10 minutes.

5. Next, add the potatoes, carrots, tomatoes and apricot jam. Toss everything until evenly mixed, put the lid on the potjie and let it simmer for 2 hours.

6. During this time of cooking, you may want to lift the lid occasionally, run your wooden spoon along the bottom of the potjie and check that nothing is burning. In the off chance that the potjie is running dry and in fact wants to burn, add a bit of water or reduce the heat under the potjie so it simmers less aggressively – or perhaps even both of these options. Never add too much extra water as we are not making soup.

7. After 2 hours of simmering, our aim is to have a curry with perfect consistency so if you’re not quite getting there, let it simmer without the lid until you are happy with the situation. ‘Happy with the situation’ means the meat is tender and coming off the bone when encouraged to do so with a fork. It also means you are happy with the consistency of the sauce.

AND … Serve with rice or roosterkoek.