I am speaking to Eunice Jansen from Bok Shop on Wheels, at the South African Bok Shop, Richmond Centre. “Boerewors is a traditional sausage, which we love to barbeque, served on a hotdog bun with fried onions, just like an American hotdog,” she begins enthusiastically, and adds: “When we do boerewors rolls on a Saturday, they sell like ‘hot cakes’.”
I want to know what makes their boerewors diﬀerent from others and ask if it’s a family recipe. “You can get boerewors in many ways,” Eunice explains. “Wim (Eunice’s husband) uses his own recipe. The quality of meat that goes into our boerewors is of a very high standard and contains more meat than fat.” This means that they cater for people who are lactose intolerant but for people with other dietary requirements too. “We can also do boerewors without pork for people who don’t eat pork. At the end of the day, our own recipes are unique. We do gluten free boerewors for people who are gluten intolerant,” she adds. “So at least there is a bit of a variety. We cater for the ‘odd ones’.
Wim makes his own meat patties with the same meat we put into the sausages,” Eunice continues. “We do a special ‘Bok Shop Burger’ with lettuce, tomato, onion and our ‘secret sauce’. It’s almost a combination of a mushroom and cheese sauce with… oops sorry! We can’t share our secret sauce recipe.” I smile, understandingly. “In the trailer we’ll also be looking at putting all our South African brands in like chips and chocolates. At the A & P Show in Stratford recently we did koeksisters as well. It is a South African dessert which is almost like a doughnut, deep-fried and soaked in a syrup. It’s yum!!”
They also offer a potato spiral for ‘potatoes on a stick’, which is also deep fried. You can choose spices such as Aromat & butter, sour cream & chives, fruit chutney, salt & vinegar, and BBQ. “These are typical South African spices, which makes this very unique,” Eunice says. “Some people have started asking that chicken salt be added to the mix too, especially for the hot chips, although the typical South African spices have been a hit at the A & P Show. Lots of South Africans use Aromat seasoning on their fried eggs or hot chips. The Bok Shop on Wheels also sold biltong, which was a big seller on the day. Everything is pure meat, pure beef, own recipes, and it’s all made fresh on the day. Nothing is precooked,” she says, and then adds: “We started Bok Shop on Wheels Labour Weekend this year. Our shop, The South African Bok Shop, has been going for over two years now.”
I want to know what their motivation was to come to New Zealand. “I think we’re all pretty much in the same boat,” I am told. “Every South African has their own reason for leaving our once beautiful country behind. We all know that we don’t have much of a future if we stay there, and therefore lots of South Africans take the big leap to get out and set themselves and their children up for a better future. South Africans feel very passionate about their nation and we love our country, but the time has come to move on – move out, if you can. It was a choice we made. New Zealand welcomed us in, and this has now become ‘home’, although we will always miss our birth country. In February 2020 it will be four years since we moved to New Zealand.”
Eunice says they have not always been in the food business. They saw the potential to open a shop and have never looked back. “We stock products people really miss from ‘back home’,” she says. She tells me that the shop has been doing very well over the last two years. “We thought: ‘What better way to expand this than to start a mobile van, ‘Bok Shop on Wheels’.”
For more information as to what they do, the products they stock and where the Bok Shop on Wheels be next, go to their Facebook page Bok Shop on Wheels for the latest updates, or visit their website, South African Bok Shop.