Samp and Beans

Recipe for Samp and Beans, a traditional South African dish

Samp and Beans: This is a staple dish made from dried corn kernels (samp) and beans, cooked together until tender. It is often served as a side dish with meat or as a vegetarian main meal.

Here’s a recipe for samp and beans, a traditional South African dish. It’s a hearty and delicious meal that’s perfect for a comforting dinner.

Ingredients for Samp and Beans

1 cup dried samp (cracked corn kernels)
1 cup dried sugar beans (red kidney beans can be used as a substitute)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
Salt and pepper to taste
Water for cooking
Optional serving suggestions:
Grilled or braaied meat (such as boerewors or lamb chops)
Chakalaka (a spicy vegetable relish)
Steamed greens (such as spinach or Swiss chard)
Mealie bread (a traditional South African cornbread)


Rinse the samp and beans under cold water, then place them in a large bowl and cover with water. Allow them to soak overnight or for at least 6 hours to soften.
Drain the soaked samp and beans and rinse them again. In a large pot, add the samp and beans along with fresh water, making sure there’s enough water to cover them by about an inch. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 1 to 2 hours or until the samp and beans are tender. Keep an eye on the water level and add more if needed.
In a separate pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and garlic, and sauté until the onion becomes translucent and fragrant.
Add the chopped tomatoes, carrots, and potatoes to the pan. Stir in the bay leaf, dried thyme, ground cumin, and paprika. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook the vegetables for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Once the samp and beans are cooked, drain any excess water, and add the cooked vegetables to the pot. Stir everything together gently.
Cover the pot and let the flavors meld together over low heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, allowing the vegetables to soften further and the flavors to develop.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Remove the bay leaf before serving.

Serving suggestions:

Serve the samp and beans as a main dish, accompanied by grilled or braaied meat, such as boerewors or lamb chops.
Enjoy it with a side of chakalaka, a spicy vegetable relish that complements the dish well.
Serve steamed greens, like spinach or Swiss chard, as a nutritious side.
Consider adding a traditional South African cornbread called mealie bread to complete the meal.

Enjoy your delicious samp and beans!

Samp and Beans

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