Loadshedding is ‘n moerse turn off
~ Idees_vol_Vrees ~
Ah, I see the resignation in the eyes of the South Africans reading this post and the confusion in those from other countries. What is loadshedding? South Africa’s power utility has been unable to supply enough power for the electricity grid for years now. Since around 2008, Eskom, the country’s state-owned power utility, often requires the country to do loadshedding. All municipalities in the country have to turn off power to parts of the town or city on a schedule. Power cuts usually last for around two hours at a time. Depending on the severity of the crisis, you might have two-hour outages a few times during the day for days on end. It causes a huge loss in productivity, additional expenses for restaurants and businesses to run generators and most of all frustration!
To cook or not to cook, that is the question
Many South Africans have some form of auxiliary power to get them through loadshedding. Generators and solar panels are expensive though, so most people just use candles, torches and gas cookers. If you are unlucky to have loadshedding during dinner time, you might have a problem though. Most home cooks can organise themselves a meal of curry and rice, or stir fry. But if you get loadshedded over dinner time a few days in a row, you might be running out of ideas for dinner. So I have decided to make a handy list of Loadshedding Menu Ideas. Most of these meals can be made on one or two gas cookers. Obviously, none use the microwave or oven. Many of the meals can be made with pantry staples, but having to cook dinner without the aid of the oven for a few days will probably mean that you have to stock up on the ingredients for the meals beforehand.
Melby’s Loadshedding Menu Ideas
I am not going to link every meal idea to a recipe. Most of the basic meals will be common enough to make without a recipe. I will however link some of the meals that need recipes to the blogs or websites I found them on.
- Spaghetti Bolognaise
- Stir-fry with rice or noodles
- Curry & Rice
- Pap, tomato sauce & Wors
- Braaivleis and braai-broodjies
- Hamburgers. You can deep-fry your own chips, serve the burgers with potato crisps, or make potato salad before loadshedding happens.
- One-pot Cheesy Chicken Rice and Broccoli
- Saucy Mediterranean Chicken served with pasta or polenta
- Chicken a la King
- One-pot Chicken and Rice (chicken thighs on the bone)
- One-pot Cape Malay Curry (with chicken pieces)
- Teriyaki Chicken served with noodles or rice
- Chicken Fajitas with tortillas
- Pasta and sauce. You can use a bottle of store-bought pasta sauce or make your own
- Lentil Spaghetti Bolognaise
- One-pot Pasta with Spinach
- Simple Mushroom Curry
- Falafel in pita bread
- Minestrone soup
- Greek Orzo Salad
- Broccoli Pasta Sauce
I really hope this list of delicious meals will make your loadshedding cooking easier. Just a few reminders:
- Take meat or chicken out of the freezer and defrost beforehand.
- Download recipes onto your phone in case you run out of data or the cell phone towers go down, but remember to charge your phone beforehand!
- Make sure you have a spare gas bottle available.
- If you have decided not to cook, remember those delivery services are all very busy 😉 – don’t forget to order timeously!