So my plan was to do a Steenbras or grunter for Christmas day, and in all eagerness I set out early for the harbour to pick up the boat I had hired, to get me to all the channels along the Krom River in  St Francis Bay.
krom river
I think instinctivley we all derive form of primal pleasure from actually catching our own supper instead of finding it on a store shelf. I found a nice sand bank that had a deep channel running just past it and beached the boat, dropped the anchor, popped a beer and began the big fish. Six beers and no bites later, I came to the conclusion that my perfect fishing spot was anything but that. Time to move on I thought, only to realise that in between the beers and the lack of fish, the tide had dropped. So much so that I was now in fact on dry land. After about an hour of exhaustive pulling, tugging and lots of cursing, I managed to free myself, promising not to do something that idiotic again. Little did I know I would very shortly break my own promise to myself, in spectacular fashion.
krom river2

I had had enough, the fish weren’t biting. I was down to my last four beers and my food was all but gone. Time to pack it up. I hadn’t travelled but two kilometres when sputter sputter and then silence. Instinctively I lifted the seat to check my petrol and what do you know…I’m out of juice, 10kms upriver and no mobile coverage. To top this, I am adrift in the middle of a river and drifting towards a cliff face with no suitable prospect of mooring of any kind. I dropped the anchor to slow the boat down and popped a beer. After drifting a while some houses came into view, so I decided to try the cell again and Bobs your uncle it got signal. A few frantic phone calls and an hour later the river police arrived with a full tank of juice. Sheepishly I thanked then the only way I knew how. I gave them my last two remaining beers, and headed home. I can just imagine the talk around the local bar, needless to say I did not venture out for a drink that night. So after my trials and tribulations my mission was a failure, well not quite because there is a Smith family tradition of rolled Pork neck on the spit for Christmas lunch. Who felt like fish any way.

Preparation Time: 35 mins
Cooking Time: 3+ Hours
Difficulty Factor: 3/10
Messiness Factor: 5/10
Taste Factor: 10/10
Visual Appeal Factor: 9/10
Cost Factor: 5/10


1 Pork neck (serves 6+)
Crushed Garlic


The beautiful thing about any spit braai is that once the preparation is done, you can sit down, pick up your feet and drink at least 12 beers before you need to get up again. I actually find it very therapeutic to watch the meat turn slowly and cook before my eyes hearing the sizzling fat as it drops into the coals. Let’s not forget the amazing aromas, any meat done on a spit smells that good I am pretty sure there is a market out there for a fragrance range.

So we are going to take the Pork neck and open it flat on a work surface. Using your hands, rub the crushed Garlic, Butter and herbs into both sides of the Pork neck. Roll that  sucker up and tie up the neck using either bag or string. It should now actually look like a neck again, a juicy one at that.

 neck split   neck

Push the skewer stick right through the length of the neck and put your locks in place to keep it stable while it goes for a three hour spin. Put it over the fire, flick a switch and pop a beer. After about 30 minutes start brushing on the basting at regular intervals.  If you want to retain the original flavor no basting is necessary.  After about three hours it will be ready, a little less if you want rare and visa versa if you prefer mature.  Some people say you should let your meat stand for a while first before carving it…… Me, myself and I couldn’t be bothered to wait…I like it hot.

spit slice



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