Springbok, aubergine purée, Neil’s salami

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Preparation info

  • Serves 8

    main course portions
    • Difficulty


Appears in

Mile 8: A book about cooking

Mile 8

By David Higgs

Published 2018

  • About

The balsamic aubergine purée is something I either ate at one of Gordon Ramsay’s restaurants, or saw him make … Bloody clever and delicious. The salami is from my good mate Neil Jewell, at Bread & Wine Vineyard Restaurant, Franschhoek.



  • 1.3 kg springbok loin – trimmed and cut into 160 g portions
  • 240 g basting sauce
  • Maldon sea salt flakes

Sweet potato

  • coarse salt
  • 500 g red-skin sweet potatoes
  • 150 g butter – cubed
  • salt and pepper

Springbok tartare

  • 100 g springbok loin neatly diced into tiny ‘tartare-style’ pieces
  • 40 ml gremolata

Sweet potato skins


Brush the springbok loin portions with the basting sauce and season with sea salt flakes. Place on the grill over hot coals to colour. Move the meat over medium coals and cook slowly to the desired temperature. Rare to medium-rare for game is what I prefer – see ‘Meat – cooking temperatures’. Remove from the heat and rest for 10–20 minutes in a warm place. Resting of game is very important – give it double the time (especially impala and blesbok).

Line a baking tray with coarse salt and lay the sweet potatoes on top. Prick the potatoes and then place the tray in the oven to bake at 180°C for 45–60 minutes, until they are soft but still hold their shape. Remove the potatoes from the oven and remove the skins. Reserve for the sweet potato skins recipe below. Break off or cut the flesh into chunky pieces. Place the butter on the potato, season, and keep warm.

To prepare the tartare, mix together the loin and gremolata.

Place the sweet potato skins on a tray of coarse salt and bake in the oven at 180°C until crisp but not black.

For this dish, I like to use Neil’s ‘roast hazelnuts, tarragon and chenin blanc salami’, but you could use any good smoked game salami, or omit it.

To assemble, warm the 160 g meat portions quickly over a hot fire and slice as desired. Spread the balsamic and lemon aubergine purées on each plate as shown and top with the sliced meat. Sprinkle with smoked lemon powder. On the side, arrange a warm salad made with sweet potato, springbok tartare, confit lemon skin strips, salami, sweet potato skins and wood sorrel. Finish the plate with the 56 ml beef jus on each plate.