When you are on the West Coast you have an opportunity to let your hair down and forget about city rules. No heels and make-up required. West Coast living is easy and slow but the food is good. The following are my top five recommendations of what to eat when you are on the West Coast visiting Langebaan, Saldanha, Paternoster or Velddrif.
- Try a bokkom. If you can reach for a bokkom without pulling a face you have West Coast blood. These dried fish are made from “harders” or mullets and are as synonymous to Velddrif as the Berg River. Buy them peeled to make sure the fishy smell does not overwhelm you.
- Next up is snoek. Smoked, fried or braaied. A weekend on the West Coast is not complete until you’ve had a piece of snoek. Flake it on toast for breakfast, eat it with chips for lunch or have it with sweet potato for dinner.
- Paternoster is Crayfish HQ. If you can’t find crayfish in Paternoster you will not find these delectable crustaceans anywhere. Pop the cork of a good bottle of lightly oaked Chardonnay and you are in for a treat.
- Go picking. Mussel picking. Be sure to have your permit ready. Not into singing for your supper? Just buy the mussels from Charlies Fish Shop in Saldanha. They are sold close to where they are farmed in Saldanha Bay. It is easy to spot the Mediterranean or blue mussel rafts floating in the bay.
- A real treat for the discerning palate must be oysters. Recognised for the beneficial influences of the Benguela current and the plankton rich waters of Saldanha Bay the Saldanha Bay Oyster Company has been going since 2005. Pacific oysters are cultivated here to be enjoyed wherever there is a celebration and cold, dry bubbly.