If you’re a fan of soups that have a bit of a kick, this recipe for pinda bravoe is perfect for you. This spicy Surinamese peanut soup is not difficult to make. A bit of tropical heat to combat the cold winter weather.
Pinda bravoe is a dish from Suriname, a country situated on the east coast of South America. In 1667 it became a Dutch colony, after they basically traded it with the British for New Amsterdam (now New York). At that point, there were already a fair number of plantations present in the country. The Dutch settlers made sure to take advantage of this, growing valuable products like coffee, cocoa, sugar cane and cotton.
Unfortunately, to do all this work, they brought in African slaves. These people were forced to work on the plantations, under terrible conditions. When slavery was finally abolished in 1863, they of course left as soon as they possibly could. Which left the plantation owners with a shortage of labour. They decided to solve this problem by bringing in workers from abroad. At first, mostly from Indonesia and India. But later also from China and the Middle East. Nowadays, Suriname is a cultural melting pot. With Surinamese cuisine as one of the obvious signs of this.
After the country became independent in 1975, a large number of Surinamese people immigrated to the Netherlands. Of course, they brought their colourful cuisine with them. Surinamese peanut soup (pinda bravoe), was perhaps one of the first Surinamese dishes to reach the average Dutch dinner table. It’s a dish that has very clear African roots. Many African countries have versions of this soup. And because of their history with slavery, this dish can also be found in the southern United States and the Caribbean.
The main ingredient of peanut soup is, unsurprisingly perhaps, peanut butter. While you can use any type of peanut butter you like, you’ll get the best results with so-called natural peanut butter. This kind has a high percentage of peanuts and very few additives.
But wait, there is an even better option! Surinamese peanut butter.
This is a natural peanut butter that contains Madame Jeanette chili peppers. And yes, it’s pretty spicy. However, I didn’t find it too hot and I prefer the taste of it. This is of course just my opinion. If you’re not a fan of spicy, simple use ordinary peanut butter or a mixture of both.
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