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Chakalaka’s glossary of South African food

Don’t know your ‘bobotie’ from your ‘bangers and pap’? You’re not alone. Lots of our customers at Chakalaka tell us this is the first time they’ve experienced South African food.

So to clear up any misunderstandings (there’s no bunnies in ‘bunny chow’, you’ll be glad to hear), here’s our guide to some of the most unusual dishes on our menu. 

All of them are very popular in South Africa, but hard to find in Manchester. Come and try them at Chakalaka on Oldham Street and see what you’ve been missing.

Biltong (£5)

It’s a dry-cured beef, like jerky, but nicer. Biltong is essentially a bar snack — very good with a beer. We also do ‘droëwors’ — a more hardcore version of biltong with a stronger taste and juicier texture.

Bangers and Pap (£10)

A South African version of sausage and mash. The ‘banger’ is a traditional South African Boerewors hot dog, and pap is a smooth porridge made from creamed maize. It’s served with our own Chakalaka relish.

Bobotie (£6)

This sweet main is a classic dish of South Africa. It’s best described as a sweet version of shepherd’s pie. Beef mince is seasoned with a spice mix and sweetened with sultanas and mango. On top, there’s a creamy, custardy sauce.

Bunny Chow (£10)

It’s basically a curry sandwich. People think it’s rabbit stew, or a salad, because that’s what bunnies eat. It’s actually a Chicken Malay curry in a hollowed-out chunk of bread — it’s a street food in Durban, which has a high Asian population.

Koek Balls (£5)

These are made of doughnut-style dough, dipped in a cinnamon and lemon syrup. You can get a bowl to share but you might end up fighting over the last one. They’re amazing with coffee.

Amarula (£3)

Amarula is like a South African version of Baileys. It’s a creamy liqueur made from the fruit of Marula trees. Elephants get drunk on it when the fruit ferments in their trunk. 

Why not come and try these dishes yourself?

You’ll find Chakalaka at 105A Oldham Street, Manchester, just opposite The Castle Hotel.

Opening hours

Wednesday 5pm – 10pm

Thursday 12pm – 10pm

Friday/Saturday 12pm – 2am

Sunday 12pm – 10pm

Closed Mon-Tues


A: 105A Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW



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