Junglebook of giant sausages and pieces of South African history | cricket | Hindustan Times
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Junglebook of giant sausages and pieces of South African history

Attendances at matches have been more up and down than your average yoyo in the first three days of this tournament, reports Anand Vasu.

cricket Updated: Sep 25, 2009 18:49 IST
Anand Vasu

Attendances at matches have been more up and down than your average yoyo in the first three days of this tournament.

September 24, which is a public holiday in the country, marking South African Heritage Day, first declared in 1996, coincided with the home team playing, and even hours before the start of the game, the stands were packed.

The concept of Heritage Day came about through a need to “recognise aspects of South African culture which are both tangible and difficult to pin down: creative expression, our historical inheritance, language, the food we eat as well as the land in which we live,” according to the Department of Arts, Culture, Science and Technology.

When the government declared September 24 as Heritage Day, former president Nelson Mandela made his views on the need to appreciate the occasion clear in an address to the nation.

“We did so knowing that the struggles against the injustice and inequities of the past are part of our national identity; they are part of our culture.

“We knew that, if indeed our nation has to rise like the proverbial phoenix from the ashes of division and conflict, we had to acknowledge those whose selfless efforts and talents were dedicated to this goal of non-racial democracy.”

It's difficult to take in any of the heritage or culture on a whistlestop cricket tournament, but a South African acquaintance nudged me in the right direction.

The boerewor, invented 200 years ago in the Netherlands, is a giant sausage that has now come to represent this part of the world.

The meat is a coarse mince of beef, lamb and pork infused with spices like coriander seed, black pepper, nutmegs and clove.

Unlike the typical bland sausage you might eat at a full English breakfast, the boerewor is a coming together of different tastes and flavours, a full-on experience.

A taste of South Africa, you might say.