Braai hard with a vengeance

Posted by Mishqah Schippers on 30 September 2021

With National Heritage Day having passed, plenty of South Africans lit up their braais with some finding their braai utensils lacking. Gear Editor Matthew Sterne found out how to up your flame game.

1 | Technipunch Double Square Pizza Dome

R1 899, outdoorwarehouse.co.za
What I like to call the real Little Italy, this 7.4kg pizza dome (675mm x 316mm) fits onto a large braai and cooks two pizzas in about 10 minutes, as long as it’s heated up to 180°C. This version doesn’t have an in-built thermometer, although there’s one available (for R200 more). A pizza spade is provided, along with two stainless steel tiles and a pizza cutter. The oven has a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars on Takealot, with plenty of satisfied users who swear they’ll never order a restaurant pizza again. Some useful tips: don’t put your oven over direct flames (ideal height is 15cm above the coals) and use cake flour to ensure the pizza doesn’t stick.

2 | Cadac 33cm Pizza Stone

R267, cadacinternational.com
Made from durable, heat-resistant cordierite, this pizza stone draws moisture out of dough. The result? A crispy pizza, but whether it’s cooked to perfection is up to you. The stone and wire holder can fit inside a standard Weber and the stone can also be used in an oven up to temperatures of 300°C.

3 | Cadac 36cm Paella Pan

R799, cadacinternational.com
Don’t be fooled, you can cook more than just paella on this truly non-stick pan. Egg-and-bacon breakfasts, pastas, risottos, shakshuka – it’s more a question of what can’t you cook. It’s ideal for catering for large groups of people and is a joy to clean.

4 | Weber 30cm T-brush

R119, weber.co.za
With this brush, there’s no need to burn your fingers using half a lemon or onion anymore. It may be simple, but that’s the kind of small luxury I look for in life. You can use it to clean your cooking grates before each use and to get in all the hard-to-reach places.

5 | Yuppie Gift Baskets Braai
Gadget Multi-tool

R475, karykase.co.za
If a spatula met a Swiss Army knife in a camp-ground kitchen, this is the lovechild they would have: a Swiss Army braai knife. The stainless steel multi-tool converts into an egg-lifter, marinade brush, corkscrew, braai fork and even tongs. It’s not something you’d use at home, but it would come in handy for picnic braais or bush trips. To make things even easier, it packs into a hardy suede bag.

6 | Camp Cover Braai Kit Bag

R499, outdoorwarehouse.co.za
Nothing too fancy here, but it gets the job done – the precise thing you look for when it comes to braai gear. The ripstop bag is a convenient (and clean) way to transport your braai kit. It’s equipped with an outside pocket and sleeves for firelighters, tongs and other braai utensils. With zips on either side, it ensures the braai grid stays firmly in place while on the move.

7 | Weber Traveler Portable Gas Grill

R8 999, weber.co.za
A braai with wheels: what every braai master has wished for when the peanut gallery has become too opinionated. Yet this new release from Weber is more than just mobile. It was made for the US market (hence the spelling) and aimed at those who want to ‘barbecue’ outside the home. It folds down with satisfying ease and wheels smoothly, although at 22kg, it’s not the simplest thing for one person to load into a car. It’s large enough to cook 15 standard burgers, has an in-built thermometer and is purposefully designed to optimise gas usage. For those with a love of exploring and space in the boot or bakkie, this could really come in handy.

8 | Everdure by Heston Blumenthal Cube Charcoal Portable Braai

R2 999, yuppiechef.co.za
Celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal is recognised for many things – his use of liquid nitrogen, triple-cooked chips and creating a bacon sandwich to be eaten in space. He can now add transportable charcoal braai to that list. The Everdure looks like a large ice bucket but when the lid – which doubles as a bamboo chopping board and integrated storage tray – comes off, it reveals a grid ideal for two people. My favourite feature is that the handles of the porcelain enamel firebox remain remarkably cool to the touch throughout the braai, so it can be moved around easily.

9 | Fireside Fire Pit and Braai

R2 499, outdoorwarehouse.co.za
A friend’s dad once built a braai half a metre off the ground because, ‘It’s just lekker to sit and braai.’ That’s exactly what you’ll need to do with this 10.4kg setup. The grid sits shin height off the ground – although I envision it getting the most use as a firepit. The 1.2mm thick steel body has a similar size circle (600mm) as a drum barrel and comes with a 5mm galvanized steel grid and a charcoal grate.

10 | GI 50 Anywhere Folding Braai

R2 999, anywhereproducts.co
Designed and refined by a couple who love over-landing, this 10.2kg stain-less steel folding braai ticks a few boxes. It can use gas or charcoal. The gas is ideal for an egg-and-bacon brekkie (on the flat tray provided) or a quick meal on the grill. If things are more rustig, a charcoal fire can be started. When overlanding, space is always an issue so it has been designed to fold into a bag, making it the most compact of the braais I tested. It’s efficient, too.

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