How to Braai Like a Pro


Every nationality prides itself on the specialty food and dishes they offer. South Africa is no exception. What is South Africa without its sunny skies and braaivleis? We love to braai. Period.

A braai is so much more than cooking meat outdoors over an open fire. A braai shared with family and friends is part of our culture! South Africans are so fond of braaiing that we have dedicated a national day to it. The 24 September is national Heritage Day, or Braai Day.

Everyone loves a great braai. Here are a couple of tips to make yours the best! Go one step further and get your Braai Box from Urban Direct.

7 Ways to Make Your Braai the Best

Whether you prefer a gas braai or classic South African wood-fired braai, these tips can help you make the most of the experience. You don’t need Heritage Day to show off your braai skills. Apply these clever tips to make yours the best braai in South Africa.

1. It All Starts with the Fuel for the Flame.

If you want to braai like a pro, you need the right fuel to get the best results. Practicality is the first thing to consider, is what will fuel your fire. Real wood is great, but it is not always available.

Avoid using charcoal that burns too hot and too fast. The best fuel to use is fuel that provides a slow burn. A briquette braai is your best braai staple. The result is moist and delicious braai meats and sides.

2. You Don’t Need an Entire Coalmine for Your Braai.

Less is always more for the perfect fire. Newbies (beginners) often feel that they need to pile on the coals for the perfect fire. But too much charcoal will suffocate the oxygen in the fire.

If you are fortunate enough to light the fire, the flames will be too hot. Place a single layer of coals just below the braai grid. Leave a couple of centimetres below the grid and above the coals.

Ensure the area for cooking is sufficient. The general rule of thumb is only 20 briquettes for your average-sized braai.

3. Keep the Braai Grid Clean.

Keep your braai grid clean for the best cooking results. Your grid will never look new once it’s used. This does not excuse you from cleaning the grid. It will gather dirt and grime.

A good idea is to rub the grill with garlic. You could also rub a half a lemon or an onion over the surface. Do this over a warm braai grid. The result is a great braai recipe without the fuss.

4. How Important Is Cooking Time? Too Hot or Too Cold Won’t Do!

An amazing braai results from a fire at the right temperature. By following these simple steps, you could be the next braai master!

    • Your fire will need air to flow to thrive.
    • You should heap the coals in a triangular structure.
    • Once the flames die down and the briquettes smoulder, add a little more charcoal to the fire.
    • It will take the fire about 30-35 minutes to smoulder.
    • The coals will look a little grey.
    • They should never flame, as this will scorch your piece of fish or your meat. A too-hot braai will also burn your braai chicken. It will leave the inside raw.
    • Medium heat is the best temperature to cook.

The cooking process is uncomplicated. Hold your hand a little above the hot grill. If your hand can handle the heat, your braai session can begin.

5. Cooking Order Ensures a Successful South African Braai.

Start with meat and veg that takes the longest. These usually include sweet corn, potatoes, and chicken. Next, cook sausage (boerewors), chops, and ribs. After a couple of minutes, you can cook your steak.

6. The Best Braai Utensil is a pair of tongs.

The juices of the meat will run out when using a fork. Each time you turn the meat, you will poke holes in it. The meat will then dry out. The juices will ignite the braai flames, burning the outside of the meat.

7. Avoid Flare-Ups that Can Ruin Your Great South African Braai.

As fat drips into the braai, the flames will flare up. Avoid flare-ups for the great South African braai experience.

Braai Meat Delivered to Your Door? Yes, Please!

Want to make your braai even easier? Order our Braai Box today. We’ll deliver fresh braai meats and pre-measured ingredients in our unique iced box, straight to your door.

Take the stress out of your next braai. Skip the shopping, the planning, and the fuss with our Braai Box, the secret to braaiing like a pro!


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