BBQ sandwiches. That sound just awful. It must be braaibroodtjies. Braai – BBQ; broodtjies – sandwiches.
In South Africa we do not have a barbecue, we have a Braai. There are distinguishable differences. It must be on coals from an open fire and most men are experts in this. Even if a man cannot bake an egg, he must be able to braai. It is sort of coming of age tradition as well. We even have a national day informally dedicated to braai.
One of the accompaniments to a braai is sandwiches grilled to have with whatever meat you want to braai. Usually these sandwiches are made with tomato, onion and cheese. It can be buttered on the outside or inside or some even put jam on it. But there must be braaibroodjies with a braai.
During a recent stage in my life where I have been living alone, at the sea with beautiful weather and spectacular sunsets, I had a braai by myself on quite a couple of occations. I experimented especially with braaibroodjies and the result is something that must be tried. A couple of my friends now swear by this method and more often than not these braaibroodjies have been the highlight of the braai for everyone that tried it.
Shortly after I met Gwynneth we went for a romantic weekend to Grotto Bay. (This is also where I made these for the first time.) There I made the braaibroodjies to impress her and she really had a good laugh at my particular-ness about how it must be made. It is not only men for whom the path to heart is through the stomach, it work for the girls too! She christened it Grotto Bay Broodjies…
Grotto Bay Broodjies
The arrangement that the ingredients is put onto the bread makes a huge difference and it must be in this format:
- A slice of buttered bread.
- Liberal cream cheese (creamed or softened to be able to spread it)
- Very thinly sliced onions on the cream cheese (as thin as you can get it)
- Ground black pepper on the onions.
- Liberal sliced cheese on the onions. (Not grated as the cheese separate the ingredients)
- Thick slices of tomato (about 5 mm) on the cheese
- Salt on the tomato
- A slice of buttered bread to finish off with.
This “braaibroodjie” must now be grilled on the coals until the cheese in the middle has melted and start dripping. Be careful not to burn it as it take a while to get the heat inside to melt the cheese. The coals must not be too hot and be patient with it and turn it often. The bread can be quite crispy on the outside with the very very very gooey stuff inside.