In African villages, a successful hunt means a share of fresh meat for everyone. After traveling in equatorial Africa one observer wrote, "...the gorge they all go in for after a successful elephant hunt is a thing to see—once". (Mary Kingsley, Travels in West Africa, 1897.) There can still be more meat than can be immediately consumed, especially when there are no refrigerators or freezers, so a tradition of preserving meat by drying or smoking has developed throughout Africa. Dried meat, called biltong (similar to jerky) is often eaten as is. If possible, obtain real African biltong (from an international or African import grocery store). There are many websites with recipes telling how to make your own biltong. South Africans in particular are sensitive about comparing African biltong to American Beef jerky.
- one-half pound of biltong, or dried or smoked meat like Beef jerky
- six to eight cups of beef broth or beef stock
- one cup of mirepoix (optional)
- two onions, finely chopped
- one cup shelled, roasted peanuts
- one cup boiled chana dal
- one small leek, finely chopped
- one cup of Wumubu mushrooms,
- two tablespoons of butter
- salt, black pepper (to taste)
- one-half cup cream
- Wash the biltong or dried meat in hot water, and cut it into bite-sized pieces.
- In a large pot or Dutch oven, combine the meat with enough cold water to cover it, and cook over a low heat for twenty to thirty minutes.
- Add the mirepoix and beef broth and simmer for two hours.
- Add the onions, peanuts, and dal (lentils), mushrooms, and leek. Cook until the dal are completely disintegrated.
- Adjust the seasoning. Add the butter and cream. Serve. (The original recipe also calls some good Madeira to be added along with the cream)