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Ilse van der Merwe’s springbok pie

Recipe developer, food writer and reviewer Ilse van der Merwe of The Food Fox blog, shared this richly satisfying recipe with us. She advises you start defrosting your meat in the morning, if you're going to start marinating that evening. "Don’t be in a rush – all good things take time."

Preparation time: 24 hours (the meat needs to marinate overnight)

Cooking time: 3-5 hours

Ingredients

180 ml (3/4 cup) freshly squeezed lemon juice
20 ml (4 teaspoons) balsamic vinegar
60 ml (1/4 cup) olive oil
2 crushed garlic cloves
3 bay leaves
5 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
2 teaspoons toasted ground coriander
1.5 kg leg or neck, cubed springbok
500 g lamb knuckles or stewing meat (or substitute with more venison)
250 g cubed, smoked bacon
2 medium, finely chopped onions
2 crushed garlic cloves
375 ml (1.5 cups) water
salt
250 ml (1 cup) red wine
15 ml (1 tablespoon) flour
30 ml (2 tablespoons) apricot jam
15 ml (1 tablespoon) natural yoghurt
3 cups white bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
250g cold butter
1 cup sour cream

Method

For the pastry
If you don’t mind extra effort, this pastry is really worth making. (But if you are looking for a quick option, rather use store-bought puff pastry and skip to the recipe for the filling.) Start making the pastry while your meat is marinating. It takes a good few hours to roll and rest.

Sift flour and salt together. Cut butter into small cubes, and rub with your fingers into the flour mixture untill it resembles big breadcrumbs. Add the sour cream, and cut it into the flour mixture untill it starts to come together. Knead lightly into a ball (don’t add any liquid, it will eventually become a soft ball of dough). Cover and rest the dough for at least 30 minutes in the fridge, or overnight.

Roll out on a floured surface, then fold into thirds. Roll out again, and fold into thirds. Repeat a third time. Return the dough to the fridge for another 30 minutes. Now repeat the rolling and folding process. Rest again in the fridge. The dough is now ready to roll out into a 5 mm thick sheet before baking.

For the filling 
Mix lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic, bay leaves, cloves, pepper and coriander. Marinate the meat cubes overnight or for 1 day in the mixture, covered, in the fridge.

In a heavy based large pot, fry the bacon, onions, garlic over medium heat untill the onions are soft and translucent. Add the marinated meat along with the marinade and add water. Put the lid on and cook for 1.5 to 2 hours, or untill all the meat has cooked from the bone. Remove from heat, allow to cool and debone. Mix the red wine, flour and jam to a paste, and add to the meat. Return to the stovetop on medium heat, and heat through carefully untill thoroughly incorporated and piping hot. Lastly, stir in the yoghurt. Remove from heat.

Spoon meat mixture into an ovenproof dish. Cover with your sheet of home-made sour cream

pastry or store-bought puff pastry. Cut small slits in the pastry, paint with egg-wash, and bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for about 40 minutes or untill golden brown and puffy. Serve with rice and veggies.

Recipe courtesy of Ilse van der Merwe of The Food Fox.

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