Lamb Bunny Chow

Deliciously tasty South African street food.

Lamb Bunny Chow main

I CAME across this recipe on a trip to Southern Africa last year.

Check out more bush cooking recipes

The original recipe used a loaf of bread, but I’ve adapted it to use round rolls that are a little denser in texture so that it better holds the curry mixture. Originating in the Durban Indian community, a ‘bunny’ is basically made from half a loaf of bread, with the inside scooped out and used to dip in the gravy.

Lamb Bunny Chow ingredientsThe hollow loaf is then filled with delicious curry. There are a few spicy ingredients, but don’t be put off. It doesn’t take long to make the curry once you have everything you need, and it has a wonderful flavour. Plus, it’s a one-pot dish.

Serves: 4 to 6
Oil 500-750g
lamb – cut into small cubes
2 medium onions – finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic – crushed (or use 2 tsp crushed/minced variety)
1-2 tsp minced ginger (paste variety)
1 chilli – finely chopped (or one or more tsp of crushed chilli or dried chilli flakes)
1½ tsp ground fennel
1½ tsp ground cumin
1½ tsp garam masala
1½ tsp ground coriander
1½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp curry powder (add more to taste)
1½ tsp paprika powder
4-6 cardamom seeds – lightly crushed
400g can tomatoes – chopped or crushed
2-4 small/medium potatoes – cut into cubes
½ tbsp vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1 cup peas – optional (any variety)
Salt and pepper to taste
4-6 bread rolls – any crusty roll will do.

Prep time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 45-60 mins 

  • Heat oil in your camp oven or large pan over a high heat.
  • Add the meat and stir until browned. You should do this in batches so you don’t ‘stew’ the meat.
  • Remove the browned meat from the pan and set aside.
  • Add a little more oil if needed and then add the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli. Sauté until softened.
  • Add all the dry spices and sauté for a few minutes, stirring continuously. The aroma from the spices will be released.
  • Return the browned meat to the pan, along with the tomatoes, potatoes, vinegar and sugar. Stir to mix through.
  • Season to taste.
  • Bring to the boil. Then reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently for approximately 45-60 mins, or until the meat is tender and the potatoes are soft.
  • Add peas about five minutes before serving (optional).
  • Pull the centre out of the rolls and put aside. Use this bread to dip into the curry and soak up all the delicious gravy.
  • Fill the hollowed-out roll with the hot lamb curry and serve with the extra bread. HINTS • Garlic, ginger and chilli in tubes are easy to use and store in the fridge. 
  • Instead of making up all the spices, use your own favourite Indian curry powder or paste mix and add enough to suit your taste. 
  • You could serve this curry on a bed of rice.
  • Measure all of the dry ingredients at home before you leave and store in a small, airtight container or clip bag and pack away for your camping trip.


For more interesting and delicious African and Caribbean recipes, check out Immaculate Bites:


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