I am at the eve (almost...) of a trip back to sunny South Africa, so I started thinking about some of the things that are a little unique to my homeland.
One of the very strange things you will find on a restaurant menu (especially if they serve meat!) is monkey gland sauce... Yes, you read it correctly and it sounds absolutely disgusting. But. It is not what it seems to be. This interestingly named sauce does not involve monkeys at all — even South Africans are happy to hear this! It is made of a combination of onions, garlic, ginger, chutney (a very fruity, savoury jam from Pakistan), soy sauce, mustard, ketchup and wine. Speculation as to the origin of this strange sauce has us believe that a French chef at the Carlton hotel in Johannesburg put it together. They named it such as medical scientists speculated that monkey glands may keep people young.
Some colloquial expressions I haven’t used since last I was there will be great to hear. We are very fond of the word «lekker». It is pronounced like (or very closely) a word used in Russian Empire for doctor/physician: «лекарь». It does however, have nothing to do with medicine and everything to do with how you are experiencing something. Closely mimicked by the word «хорошо», we use it to express good, positive sentiments about anything, a good meal was «lekker», a great holiday was «lekker!», a good night’s sleep was «lekker» and a million other things.
A little glimpse of life in South Africa, which I do miss at times, as fantastic as my Russian family and people are...
I will be thinking of you all here in Russia whilst I sip some homemade red wine under crystal blue skies in temperatures of about 35 above zero most days.
Happy speaking and see you guys soon.