Thursday, 30 April 2009

Baby Bunny Chows

So Easter has come and gone, and all the bunnies are now half price! I wondered to myself - why does the Easter Bunny bring eggs - surely we should have a Easter Chicken? So I asked Mr Google and this is what I found.

The Easter bunny has its origin in pre-Christian fertility lore. The Hare and the Rabbit were the most fertile animals known and they served as symbols of the new life during the Spring season.
This is a little confusing to us in the South, as Easter is the start of winter - but I guess most things are upside down for us!
So with all these bunnies around - I was inspired to make a very well known South African treat - Bunny Chow. The history of which is far more exciting than the Easter Bunny.

The most popular is that the bunny chow was started by a Durban restaurateur who came up with the idea during the apartheid era. "People of colour" (as opposed to the "see-through people") were not allowed, by law, to sit inside his restaurant and he didn’t want to give them a plate to takeaway so he came up with the idea of making a deep hole into half a loaf of bread, filling it with curry and putting the scooped out part back on the top as a form of lid. (Reference here)

One account suggests that Indian migrant workers from India who were brought to South Africa to work the sugar cane plantations of Kwazulu-Natal, required a way of carrying their lunches to the field; the hollowed out loaf of bread was a convenient way to transport their vegetarian curries. Meat based fillings came later. (Reference here)

So again we have one bunny chow and many stories, but whatever you believe, they are very proudly South African and very good to eat.

I made a "nouveau cuisine bunny chow", using mini loaves - we don't work long hours cutting cane, so our appetite is slightly smaller! You can use any curry filling, I made a simple mince curry using the recipe on the Spice Mecca Tastes of the Cape Curry Mince box.


Nina Timm said...

Great informative post!!! I love Bunny Chows even though the heartburn kills me afterwards!!!

Jeanne said...

I made these earlier this year, also in these cute mini-loaves that you can get over here - they are soooooo good!

Re. the Easter bunny, the pre-Christian Anglo-Saxon fertility goddess had her festival at about the same time as we now celebrate Easter (her name was Oestra, which is where our word for Easter comes from) and her associated animal was the rabbit.

Cynthia said...

Thanks for the education.

Linda Harding said...

Would you believe that I have never eaten a bunny chow? These look delicious!

Jeremiah 17: 7-8

"Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree planted by the water."

It is not your business to succeed, but to do what is right : when you have done so, the rest lies with God.
C.S. Lewis

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