Bunny Chow/Kota

A Bunny Chow is a hollowed out loaf of bread filled with delicious, thick curry. It originated from the Durban Indian Community of South Africa.

IMAGE: Ottilia Anna Maunganidze

“Migrant workers from India who were brought to South Africa to work the sugar cane plantations of KwaZulu-Natal required a way of carrying their lunches to the field; a hollowed out loaf of bread was a convenient way to transport their vegetarian curries.”


The Bunny Chow was adopted by township residents of South Africa, and they named it, “iKota”. “IKota” is a smaller version of the Bunny Chow that uses only a quarter loaf of bread. It is filled with a variety of ingredients like chips, cheese, polony, burger, sausage, eggs and atchar (pickled mango).


RECIPE by Fazila Olla-Logday.

IMAGE: amcsa.co.za


* 3 tbls olive oil
* 2 medium onions, chopped
* 2 pcs stick cinnamon
* 3 cardamom pods
* 2 tsps ginger and garlic paste
* 5 fresh curry leaves
* 2 tsps curry powder
* 1 tsp chilli powder (optional)
* 1 tsp coriander powder
* 1 tsp cumin powder
* 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
* 2 ripe tomatoes, peeled and grated
* 2 tbls tomato puree
Salt to taste
* 750g lean beef mince
* 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
* ½ cup frozen baby peas

* 2 white loaves of bread, halved


1. Heat the oil in a large pan and add the chopped onions and cinnamon stick and cardamom pods.

2. Cook gently until the onion turns a light golden colour.

3. Add the ginger and garlic paste, curry leaves and the rest of the spices and cook for a further minute stirring continuously.

4. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree and salt and mix through well.

5. Add the mince and use a wooden spoon to break it up well into the tomato mixture. Once the mince is all broken up and combined, cover the pan and cook on the lowest heat for about 10 minutes.

6. Add the potatoes and cook over a medium-low heat for another 20 minutes.

7. Add a little water if you feel the curry is looking dry, but if you are serving with roties or bunny chow, it is supposed to be on the dry side.

8. Add the frozen peas and cook for a further 5 minutes.


1. Hollow out the inside of the bread.

2. Scoop in meat mixture.

3. Seal the bunny with the bread retrieved.

4. Place bunny in a large plate and serve.


* Mutton/Lamb Curry
* Chicken Curry
* Vegetable, Bean or Lentil Curry


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