The Vegetarian Option by Jan Braai

Jan Braai, when he is not braaing, and away from a fire, is a lovely man. So enthusiastic and passionate about what he does. The Vegetarian Option is Jan’s first vegetarian braai book. He has sold over 140,000 Jan Braai books in South Africa, the UK, USA, Netherlands, and the Czech Republic.

He is a South African phenomenon, the man behind National Braai Day on 24 September, and now a firm national fixture.

Jan Braai’s friends have been badgering him to write a vegetarian braai book for years, and he has finally done it! Once he sat down to tackle the task, he realised that his books have loads of great vegetarian recipes, but it isn’t fair to make the vegetarians buy all the books to find them.

Jan Braai and me, the jam in the sandwich is Marlene van der Westhuizen

So, Jan collected all his best vegetarian recipes, and then added a whole lot more. If you’re looking for a meat-free Monday option, if you have to cater for your son’s new vegetarian girlfriend or the grandchildren or have even decided to take the vegetarian plunge yourself, there’s no reason to neglect your braai – Jan has you covered. Find delicious burgers, braaibroodjies, potjies, curries, breads, and side dishes to keep you in vegetarian options for months.

“A book packed with braai recipes that don’t rely on meat – to be enjoyed by vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. Because everything tastes better when braaied. I know you’ll enjoy it!”
Jan Braai

Jan Braai’s Mushroom Burgers

This is a revolutionary burger. It’s the vegetarian burger that non-vegetarians love. I like to make them using those normal supermarket burger rolls with no substance, as it keeps the focus on the mushroom.

What you need
(feeds 6)

6 soft burger rolls
plain cream cheese
6 giant mushrooms
garlic butter
feta cheese (I like the kind with bits of black pepper but any type will do)

What To Do

  1. Slice the rolls and spread cream cheese onto the bottom half of each roll.
  2. Braai the mushrooms on medium-to-hot coals until nicely browned and fairly soft, for a total of about 6–8 minutes. Braai them for 3 minutes with the bottom (black) side facing downwards. Then flip them over, scoop a bit of garlic butter into each and then braai with the top (white) side facing downwards until they are soft. They turn quite easily and if you are gentle, they will not break apart, so either an open or hinged grid is fine.
  3. Put one mushroom on each prepared roll and crumble feta cheese over that.
  4. The burgers can be eaten immediately and juices from the mushrooms will seep into the roll as you eat.

What to do for garlic butter
Very simply you mix chopped garlic and butter. If you have parsley on hand, you chop that and mix it in as well.
For 6 mushrooms you’ll need 1–2 tots of butter, 1–2 cloves of garlic and ½ tot of parsley.

This is my wine recommendation for this dish.

Muratie Lourens Campher 2019

The wine is a four way blend of white wine grapes, led by Chenin Blanc from an old vineyard, with Sauvignon Blanc, Verdehlo and Viognier. Gembright in the glass, aromas fair jumping out. Summer fruits, desiccated pineapple, soft dried apricots and stone fruit like fresh white peaches and aromatic white flowers. The palate is crisp, fresh and elegant, at the same time rich and generous. Excellent lemony lime fruit with spun sugar and creamy oatmeal. Eminently drinkable now, though with cool cellaring will give you much enjoyment over a couple of years.

Read more about Muratie Wine Estate and its rich heritage – CLICK HERE


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