The word heritage depicts that which one may inherit, for example property, land, money, personal items like jewellery or antiques and even the genes one inherits from our grand-parents or parents passing on some unique or troublesome family characteristics !!
A nations heritage is that which has been passed down in a more culturally related way, preserving some of a countries unique history like traditional dance , various rituals , music and festivities.
Many South Africans from all walks of life will down tools on the 24th of September to participate in what Heritage day has to offer themes that are motivating and positive include the wearing of traditional dress, displays of local art, face-painting for children incorporating the colours of the flag and religious gatherings.
But nothing defines our " South Africanism ' like the firing up of the heritage day braai. The aromatic smoke drifting from the coals is enough to tantalise the tastebuds and if this sounds uninspiring, think again, for a braai can be traditional, regional or be presented with style.
Take for example a cape malay braai, cooking snoek or ostrich over the coals instead of beef, using the spices reminescent of the traditional malay babotie.
Or one may be invited to a delicious stew, slow cooked over the hot coals , having meat and vegetables combined, called " potjie kos", a braai with a difference perfected my some of our afrikaans fellow citizens.
What may come to mind is that these braais are stricktly 'meat eating events' but not at all as seafood braais have been perfected as have those for vegetarians including a selection of vegetables on a skewer, stuffed peppers and butternuts and non-meat burgers and sausages.
On a more dignified note, some are inspired by tradition but add a twist creating the "upmarket braai" which may serve whole lamb on a spit accompanied by rather exotic salads and other side dishes, . Guests being seated at elegant well laid tables
no paper plates here with champagne being poured into fluted glasses replacing beer !
One inventive couple decided to celebrate their wedding on a certain 24th of september with a unique idea, offering guests participation in the cooking, allowing choices from a variety of meats and delectables to be placed on the coals , albeit a somewhat ' smokey affair' !
the old colonial farm house theme created the perfect ambiance.
At the end of the day pride in one's heritage and the comradie enjoyed leaves one with a sense of satisfaction and can assist to dissapate some ingrained prejudice.
When planning your heritage meal why not surprise your guests with a small rooibos gift from matsimela which echoes the earthiness of africa , giving that little extra special touch.