Recipe: Sipho’s easy cheesy pap balls

Who doesn't love pap with a hearty South African braai? Glam it up with celebrity chef Siphokazi Mdlankomo’s easy cheesy twist

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Looking for a winning side dish to accompany your lekker braai this weekend? Home cooking extraordinaire Siphokazi Mdlankomo’s deep-fried pap balls, stuffed with chicken and mushroom in a béchamel sauce, come highly recommended.

Nothing screams South African like a good pot of pap, but Mdlankomo’s twist is sure to add a little excitement to your braai plate.

Make Mdlankomo’s deep-fried pap balls, glammed up with a stuffing of chicken and mushrooms, and a dash of sauciness.

ALSO READ: The village girl who found culinary stardom


mixing bowls x 6

chopping board

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paper towel

plate for plating

pots x 4, medium and a deep pot for deep frying


kitchen towels

soapy water in a bowl for hands

oil for deepfrying


wooden spoons

measuring jug


Béchamel sauce

2 tbsp flour

2 tbsp butter

1 cup milk

1 cup chopped chicken and mushrooms

salt and pepper

Tomato and onion relish (Bisto)

2 tbsp oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 tsp Italian herbs

1 tbsp chutney

60 ml vegetable stock


250g maize meal

1 tbsp garlic salt

500ml chicken stock or water

1 tbsp butter

1/3 cup baby spinach or shredded cabbage

To make pap balls

1 cup flour

1 cup amasi

3 cups bread crumbs

100g cheese, cut into small blocks

oil for deep frying

Bisto (tomato and onion relish) to serve

Basil to garnish


Béchamel sauce

  1. Melt the butter in a sauce pan, stir in the flour and cook for 3 minutes.
  2. Add the milk and stir using a whisk to avoid lumps.
  3. Season with salt and pepper, lower the heat and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken and mix to combine.
  5. Remove from heat and spread on the tray.
  6. Leave to chill and set until needed.

Tomato and onion relish (Bisto)

  1. Heat oil in a saucepan and fry onion.
  2. Add the garlic, tomatoes and cook on medium heat for 3 minutes.
  3. Add the herbs, chutney, stock, close with the lid and cook for 10 minutes or until cooked.


  1. Bring stock or water to a boil in a sauce pan.
  2. Once water has boiled add spinach or cabbage, garlic salt, then whisk in the maize meal.
  3. Once maize meal is whisked in use a wooden spoon to stir the pap.
  4. Reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes with the lid closed.
  5. Add the butter and cook for a further 5 minutes.

To make pap balls

  1. Heat oil in a pot on medium heat.
  2. Take a spoonful of the pap and press in each of the rings.
  3. Add a teaspoon of the chicken mixture and a block of cheese in each ball.
  4. Shape into a ball.
  5. Place flour, amasi and breadcrumbs into separate bowls.
  6. Deep each ball in flour, amasi, then breadcrumbs.
  7. Fry the balls for 5 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Drain on a paper towel.
  9. Serve with Bisto and garnished with basil.

ALSO READ: The village girl who found culinary stardom

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