South African Corn Pie with Bacon, Mushroom & Cheese

Pap or mielie pap is relatively coarse flour made from cornmeal or maize which is known as mealies in southern Africa. From the Portuguese word milho, Mieliepap tert (meal-ee-pap turt) is a South African favorite – a sort of cornmeal version of lasagna.

For the Zulu, the largest ethnic group in South Africa with an estimated 10–12 million people, pap has been their staple food for a very long time.

Mieliepap Tert – Cheesy Cornmeal Pie with Onion, Mushroom, and Bacon

This tasty side dish is a pie made from thick cornmeal porridge (pap) between layers of an onion, bacon, mushrooms filling and melted cheddar cheese. This casserole is a sure favorite of kids and adults alike.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Braai, Brunch, Side Dish
Cuisine: African, South Africa
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 8
Author: My Hungry Traveler


  • large saucepan
  • Skillet or wok
  • Casserole dish


  • 4 cups Maize meal (cornmeal)
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp Unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp Fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil
  • 2 cups Diced bacon
  • 1 large Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 can Diced tomatoes, drained
  • 12 oz Mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cups Cheddar cheeses, grated
  • 2 tbsp Fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 tbsp Sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Prepare "Pap" – Pour 1⅓ cups warm tap water into pot along with salt, butter and 1 tbsp basil. Mix. Stir cornmeal into warm water. Turn on heat to low, cover, and cook for about an hour. Stir from time-to-time. Consistency should be stiff enough to be able to spread easily but not so thin that it won't set properly.
  • Make Filling – In a skillet over medium heat, saute onion and bacon in oil until onion are translucent, about 10 minutes. Stir in diced tomatoes, mushrooms, sugar, salt and pepper. Remove from heat.
  • Assemble Pie – Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a large casserole dish with butter or non-stick spray. Spoon ½ of the mieliepap and spread to cover whole bottom.
    Spoon half the onion-mushroom filling and gently spread to cover the mieliepap layer. Sprinkle half fresh basil and half cheese over everything.
    Mix about 2 tbsp water into the remaining pap and spoon it all over the filling layer. Smooth evenly again.
    Spoon remaining filling over, spread evenly. Finish with remaining cheese, basil, and sprinkle with pepper.
  • Cook and Serve – Transfer casserole to oven and cook until cheese is completely melted, 15-20 minutes. Let dish settle for 10 minutes then serve.


Calories: 846kcal | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 51g | Saturated Fat: 21g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 17g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 103mg | Sodium: 1729mg | Potassium: 677mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 740IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 431mg | Iron: 3mg

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