Executive Chef and owner
in Johannesburg was introduced to the EGG by Caroline McCann of Braeside Meat Market during Casalinga Ristorante’s Olives and Vineyards festival. He shares his passion for healthy eating and living – a lifestyle choice shared by many Big Green Egg owners around the world – with us.
You recently cooked on the EGG at the Taste of Durban Festival. Tell us about your experience.
My first experience (where we cooked 3000 mini gourmet boerie rolls using only 3 bags of charcoal) with the EGG was using it more as a traditional “braai”, but with Taste of Durban, I could explore a variety of cooking techniques. We did “braai”, but we also slow-cooked some amazing pork and lamb. Ever so often, we’d scatter some Jack Daniels wood chips amongst the coals and that smoke really got into the meat. The pork crackling was just to die for as we started it quite hot initially and then brought the temperature down. The team and I gorged ourselves on this backstage! It sounded like a bit of a barnyard, to be honest!
You’re a relatively new “EGGhead”. What advice do you have for someone who is thinking of investing in an EGG or have already joined the family?
Definitely have your EGG set in a table. It makes for an amazing entertainment feature. Use it in its entirety as it’s so much more than just a “braai”. It’s an incredible device, so learn as much as you can about it, attend classes and make it your own.
What has been the biggest surprise about the EGG for you?
Having played around with it for a while now, I’ve been amazed at how controllable the temperature is. I do a lot of slow cooking in gas cookers, but you simply cannot compare the smoky charred flavour you get from a charcoal grill like the EGG. That’s what we South Africans like! The versatility, too, has been a very positive surprise.
You’re currently very involved in promoting the Paleo / Banting diet. Is it “EGG Friendly?
Definitely! My friend, Bruce Fordyce, introduced me to it. Bruce is healthy, happy, mood stable and running some of his best times ever! On the diet, I’ve lost 8kg in 8 weeks and have kept it off. There is a lot of controversy around this, as many people believe it to be a high protein/high-fat diet. For me, it’s been a high protein/high leafy greens/medium fat diet. My advice to someone contemplating this lifestyle is to know your own health first. Undergo a full medical. Then, avoid processed foods (everyone should, really), but treat yourself from time to time. Lastly, make sure you understand what all the “hype” is about before you set off. Grilling meat is very much a part of paleo, especially long roasts, so the EGG is a great tool to make sure you use an open flame grill to maximise on flavour.