Sheikh up your lunchbox

My uncle, a mere 6 years older than me, teaches at a University in H’ail in Saudi. This is really fitting…. Not because his name is Sabib, but because he has a really dry sense of humour. Okay his name is not Sabib. Let’s call him Baron. Saudi is not an easy place for a wine connoisseur who enjoys a perfectly paired glass of fermented grape with every meal, so he makes up for the ‘dry’ months on each visit back home in SA. (Note to self: include all ‘dry’ references in book titled “Kak Puns” – not to be confused with Sister Charlene Poggenpoel’s hospital drama series “Kak Panne”).

After Baron’s last visit to SA he went back to Saudi with a biltong drier. So, a different kind of dry red altogether then. I’m not sure that the purchase of a special drier was necessary though……. Uhm…. It’s Saudi…. Can’t you just hang a piece of rump on your balcony? As long as it’s not camel meat. Baron did send a pic of a camel steak shortly after his arrival in Saudi just over a year ago, and said that after smelling the raw meat he would never be brave enough to eat it, cooked or not. It looked like a big wet red chair cushion. They should cut it in the shape of a hand with the pointed finger and use them at camel races like the Yanks use those gigantic foam fingers at baseball games. I love red meat, but camels are for kiddies’ farmyard rides and that’s it.

Baron believes he has now perfected the biltong recipe, and Sir is very excited that we might have a relative who’s becoming a Biltong Sheikh in Saudi. Now, now… he’s just a biltong Baron from Sefrica. He’s also suggested making food and wine pairing recommendations for all the recipes I am putting together now and which I eventually intend sharing on my blog as well, and I think it’s a splendid fucking idea because I am rather clueless and likely to recommend something that ends up tasting like a chick’s pee.

Enough babbling now. Today I’m sharing one of Sir’s favourite lunch dishes. He says it gives him a different kind of energy, he feels great when he eats it. Like he needs anymore energy. He has plenty at any given time. On a couple of mornings last week I was unable to get out of bed. Not because I was tired! First Sir built some ridiculous tower of ornaments in front of the TV and I mumbled that he was a lunatic. He came charging out of the bathroom and tackled me to the bed, holding me down with arms, knees and legs, and he refused to let me go until I shouted “SIR IS CUTE!!!!”. He did this a few times. On Wednesday I wore a black and white striped top, and again was wrestled to the bed, then Sir jumped up on the bed and put his foot on me, because I looked like a zebra crossing. It usually takes a while to get ready for work in the morning because if he’s not hiding one shoe, he’s flinging my panties at the ceiling fan to see where they’ll land. Does this sound like a man who needs more fucking energy?!!

This is adapted from a recipe from my friend Ho………..

Sir’s Chickpea Salad

1 Tin Chickpeas (drained, obviously)

Handful of Cherry Tomatoes (halved)

4 Red Spring Onions (or half a red onion, thinly sliced)

50 – 70g Danish Feta

Juice of one lemon

70ml Olive Oil

Freshly ground black pepper


Really complicated. Read instructions twice so you don’t fuck it up.

Mix it all together, and eat. I usually separate the main ingredients so Sir can assemble it at the last minute later in the day, to prevent the Feta from going all mushy.


Okay you might want to be a goodie-goodie and cook chickpeas from scratch. Good for you you little over-achiever you!!! Google it. And ag shame if you’re doing it because it is so much cheaper than tinned chickpeas, use plain old vine tomatoes from your own veggie patch, skip the Danish Feta and use Tussers instead, gooi a dash of sunflower oil instead of Olive oil and steal a lemon from your elderly neighbour’s garden for the juice. If you’re in Saudi the lemon will probably be dry. Finally, you can sprinkle on the sachet of black pepper you bagged from Steers six months ago.

8 thoughts on “Sheikh up your lunchbox

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  3. I love chickpeas…does that make me odd??
    So Sirs’ salad is right up my alley…but I would seriously not know how to cook chickpeas, they are like baked beans, they live in a can, dont they?

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