Sòpi di binja, or dessert soup with red wine and prunes (Bonaire)

Bonaire is a special municipality of the Netherlands, which consists of the tiny island Bonaire and an even smaller uninhabited islet in the Caribbean. It used to be a part of the Netherlands Antilles until 2010 when the country was dissolved. The population is only about 16,000 and speaks Dutch and Papiamentu, a Creole language derived from Portuguese. In the past Bonaire has belonged to Spain and Britain. It has several coral reefs which house seahorses. There are also large amounts of flamingos and a donkey sanctuary.

It is hard to find information about such a tiny country, but one page states: “The resulting culinary palette is a colorful one, incorporating the zesty cooking of Sephardic Jews from Spain and Portugal, robust northern European fare imported from Holland, exotic Indonesian spices which reached the island via the maritime traffic of the Dutch Empire, and bold, flavorful cooking carried to Bonaire from West Africa.” Common ingredients include e.g. salted meat, conch, iguana, plantains, okra, celery and cactus. Lime and coconut are often used as flavorings, but also herbs like parsley.

I chose this recipe from the aforementioned page, because it sounded unusual and exotic, though a bit simple. Or perhaps more like heavy on two ingredients (that I don’t like that much) would be closer to it. Probably not a dessert most Westerners would really enjoy, but if you like wine and prunes, why not? Still, I’d rather recommend trying this great recipe for a Balearic sauce with almonds, red wine, cinnamon and prunes.

Sòpi di binja

Sòpi di binja

3 cups/7.5 dl water
15 prunes
1 cinnamon stick
4 tbsp cornstarch
2/3 cup/1.5 dl dry red wine
1/3 cup/0.9 dl sugar

In a large saucepan bring the water to a boil. Add the prunes and the cinnamon stick. Reduce the heat and simmer the prunes until soft. Remove from the heat and let cool. Discard the cinnamon sticks and remove the prunes from the liquid, setting them aside for later use.

Mix the cornstarch into the cooled cooking water (it is easier if you first mix it with a small amount of water). Return to the stove on medium heat and stir the liquid until it thickens. Add the wine, sugar, and bring to a boil. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add the prunes just before serving.

6 Responses to “Sòpi di binja, or dessert soup with red wine and prunes (Bonaire)”

  1. 1

    Olin Bonairessa lomalla vuonna 2005 (asuimme silloin Venezuelassa ja Bonairehan on lyhyen matkan päässä Venezuelan rannoista) .Tuollaiseen en törmännyt silloin ,muistaaksemme söimme vain kerran ulkona (kalaa) ja söimme enimmäkseen voileipiä. Bonairessa ei kasvateta tai valmisteta melkein mitään elintarvikkeita ja muistan,miten kummallista oli mennä supermarkettiin,ja nähdä,että melkein kaikki tuotteet siellä olivat joko peräisin Hollannista tai Venezuelasta. Parhaiten mieleeni muistuu Bonairesta ihanat sukelluspaikat (itse vaan snorklasin…näkymät veden alla huikeat siellä) ja aasien turvapaikassa tuli käytyä’ muutaman kerran.Sen oli perustanut ja sitä piti hollantilainen vanhempi nainen. Aaseja saattoi nähdä ihan teilläkin,joten piti ajaa varovasti siellä…..

  2. 2

    Kiitos mielenkiintoisista muistoista! En tosiaan löytänyt Bonairesta paljoa tietoa, kun se on niin pieni paikka.

  3. 3

    Ai niin,yksi asia mikä vielä muistuu mieleeni Bonairesta on se,miten minua häiritsi se.että’ musta väestö ja valkoinen,hollantilaisperäinen väestö,oli niin selvästi erotettu toisistaan. Valkoisten alueet olivat siistit ja kauniit,ja tummien alueet kuin slummeja.

  4. 4

    Tämä postauksesi saikin Bonairen muistoni heräämään,sillä nyt muistan myös,että pääkaupunki Kralendijkin satamassa (se on itse asiassa pieni kylä…) oli valtava skientologeille kuuluva laiva….

  5. 5

    A much nicer desert is to simply put a variety of dried fruit but mainly prunes into an ovenproof dish along with a cinnamon stick, some brown sugar and some red wine. I also like to put in a couple of slices of lemon. Cover with water and put in a dead slow oven for as long as you like. Eat the first time with ice cream and put the remainder in the fridge. The fruit will get thicker and thicker the longer you leave it. Needless to say, this is not long in our house.

  6. 6

    Yeah, that sounds more interesting (and tasty) for sure. But this was the most interesting recipe from Bonaire I found and for Vegventures I try to keep the recipes as authentic as possible.

    In Finland (and I believe sweden) prune soup and raisin soup are quite popular, usually eaten with rice porridge, though they do not contain wine.

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