Foodie Tour & Workshop

Posted on Mon October 9, 2023.

During Heritage month we had an opportunity to highlight the edible landscape of the Prince Albert area along with the produce of local food producers. Dr Hennie Fisher and his colleague Gerrie du Rand from the Pretoria University faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences were on an Indigenous Food Tour of the Western Cape and stopped in at African Relish.

Karoo Foodie Tour included:

  • Jan-Chris Marais is a Prince Albert farmer, he chatted about his pressed sun-dried white figs. He has a specialised way of preparing the dried pressed figs for packaging.
  • Fernskloof wines is a perfect stop for a wine tasting. The winery produces a selection of wines made from grapes grown in and around Prince Albert.
  • Cobus Bothma from O for Olive presented the range of products including tapenades, chutneys, olives, and preserves from the Swartrivier farm plus an olive oil tasting of the premium cold pressed extra virgin oil.
  • Johanna Luttig discussed various local plants from the edible landscape, such as the Monsonia Patersonii (Bushman’s candle / Kersbos), Dicoma Capensis (Fever bush / Karmedik), Stapelia Engleriana (African Starfish flower / Aasblom), Boophone Disticha (Poison Bulp / Gifbol) and the Cucumins Africanis (Wild gherkin / Wilde agurkie).
  • Johanna prepared some delicious jams enjoyed with local cheese from Gays Dairy.

Monsonia Patersonii (Bushman’s candle / Kersbos)

This succulent shrublet grows in shallow sandy spots and in rock crevices. It has wedge-shaped leaves and large flowers in a variety of pink to almost white colours and large thorns. The plant’s thick, waxy bark protects it from sandstorms. The bark burns easily and produces and incense-like smell. Use dead stems as firelighter.
(insert pic of Kersbos)

Dicoma Capensis (Fever bush / Karmedik)

Fever bush is a small perennial plant that has greyish-green foliage growing from creeping and spreading branches. Leaves are covered densely with short, white hairs and are, often narrow and/or oblong, variable in shape. Its insignificant flowers are a pale mauve colour with many bracts.
They grow in sandy riverbeds. Mostly used medicinal, pick leaves and infuse like a tea. Tastes very bitter but great for bladder and kidneys.
(insert pic of Fever bush- give credit to Marinda Koekemoer)

Stapelia Engleriana (African Starfish flower / Aasblom)

A perennial succulent with towering stems in a shade of green or even a reddish hue, depending on how much sun it basks in. During the summer, it blossoms with enchanting star-shaped flowers, presenting a foul-smelling odour like rotten meat. Insects are drawn to this smell. Keep in window sills or close to cooking areas.

Boophone Disticha (Poison Bulp / Gifbol)

The bulb of this plant looks like an onion and are used against burns and painful wounds. When dry use the scales from the bulp. First rub Vaselin on open wound and then top with gifbol scale and close with gauze and plaster.

Cucumins Africanis (Wild gherkin / Wilde agurkie)

Wild Gherkin Jam Recipe
Scrub gherkins, clean and top and tail. Soak in salt water for 4 hours.
Rinse under clean water.
Mix together:
3 cups water
1 cup gherkins
Thumb size fresh ginger to taste
1 cup sugar
Juice of 1 1/2 lemons

Boil for at least 2,5 hours till syrup thick and fruit glossy. Bottle.