Kettle or gas: which braai is the better buy?
Our food expert answers your culinary questions
Kettle or gas, which is the best braai to buy? — Bokkie, Pretoria
For convenience and spontaneity, I’d recommend a gas braai. If you have the time to spend building a fire and are after the conviviality and the feeling of a “real” South African braai, a kettle braai provides that. You might even want to consider getting both as there are advantages and disadvantages to each.
A gas braai offers you instant heat and the ability to control the flame and hence the temperature. It is also simple to clean. Gas braais come with a lid so can be used as a grill with the lid open, and for indirect cooking, like an oven, with it closed.
Cooking over a kettle braai requires planning, but when it comes to atmosphere it can’t be beat. As it comes with a removable lid it too can be used as oven; this means anything larger than 6cm in thickness, from a stuffed turkey to a haunch of meat, can be cooked over the coals with the lid closed.
The downside is the time and preparation involved; depending on what you are braaing, you might even need to replenish the hot coals during the cooking process. It also takes more effort to clean than a gas braai.
When it comes to buying either type of braais, there’s a range of options and sizes to choose from. Pricing is fairly competitive and before you buy, I’d suggest you research the brands and see which is the one for you.
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