Treading back to 1 month ago, Johannesburg South Africa. My friend insisted on a trip to the District 6 Eatery for dinner. What followed was a really unique and unforgettable dining experience.
The District 6 Eatery is small but big with good vibes. Located in the small Johannesburg suburb of Emmarentia and run by the vivacious Grace Forie, it stands out from the vast choice of restaurants because it offers authentic Cape Malay food (not easily found outside of Cape Town).
Our D6 feast begun with some meat and some potato samosas with a generously dressed salad. The salad was delicious with its tangy sweet dressing.
My friend and I also shared our mains. We had bobotie, which is savoury dish made with spiced minced meat (usually lamb) and topped with a fine layer of egg.
We also had a green bean bredie which is a deep, rich flavoursome and comforting stew. The beef was obviously made with such care and attention because it just melted in the mouth. Both the bobotie and the bredie came with enormous portions of rice.
We finished our meal with a big slice of Melk Tart. This is a true South African classic! A sweet creamy milk custard within a a pasty case with a good dusting of cinnamon. Melk Tart is one of those dishes that every family owns a version of. A dish who’s recipe has been handed down from generation to generation. I loved it so much that I want to try and make some myself!
On a more personal note, I don’t think that the commonly thrown about phrase “food for thought”, ever carried as much weight with me till I found myself at the District 6 Eatery.
If you are not aware of the significance behind the term District 6, there is a plaque in Cape Town that does well to summarise it;
“All who pass.
Remember the thousands of people who lived for generations in District 6 and were forced by law to leave their homes because of the colour of their skins”.
In 1966 the then South African government declared District 6 a whites-only area. By 1982, more than 60,000 people had been removed from their homes and relocated some 25km away in the bleak Cape Flats.
That February night, I left the D6 Eatery with a huge hug from Grace Forie. I left with my belly full, my heart singing and my soul a bit richer. Now this is something no amount of Michellin stars can impart.
Corner of Greenhill and Barry Hertzog Rd