Sunday, January 20, 2013

Djiendja bierie

Djiendja bierie
Djiendja bierie is the Surinamese version of ginger beer. Sweet and spicy at the same time, it is THE best thirst quenching drink ever. Perfect for those hot summer days (which is every day in Suriname). It's considered to be a treat, so it's a typical party drink. Often you'll find a punch bowl or even a bucket of djiendja bierie from which you can scoop up your own drink.

I remember watching my grandmother while she grated the ginger and mixed it with water and cloves. Later on she would add almond extract, sugar and citric acid to taste. I used to be fascinated by the way she would bring a spoon to her mouth and then add a bit of this and that. Like a witch stirring her brew.
It wasn't until much later that I discovered how simple this recipe is. Which makes me wonder, why don't I make this more often?

Niws here's the recipe to my granny's version of djiendja bierie.

  • 15 cm piece of ginger
  • 600 ml lukewarm water
  • small handfull of cloves
  • 1/2-1 tsp almond extract
  • 150-200 gr sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of citric acid 
  • 200-400 ml water

  1. Remove the skin from the ginger and grate it in a deep bowl/pot.
  2. Add cloves and lukewarm water to ginger. Stir and leave to marinate overnight or at least 3 hours.
  3. grate ginger add water & cloves pic name
  4. Strain through a fine sieve and add another 200 ml water. 
  5. ginger strain liquid clear liquid
  6. Next add almond extract, citric acid and half the sugar. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Keep adding sugar etc. until you're satisfied with the taste. Add more water if you feel it's to strong.
    * The objective of adding citric acid is not to make your drink sour, but to balance out the flavors. 
  7. add almond extract add citric acid add sugar
  8. Once your satisfied with the taste, pour liquid into a clean bottle. Add some cloves and refrigerate.
  9. stir until dissolved pour in bottle add more cloves
  10. Serve ice ice cold!

My mum told me I'm fibbing... She said there's not a chance in life anyone would let you touch there djiendja bierie and let you pour your own drink. I distinctly remember it that way, but ok ok I'm willing to accept that my mind might have played a trick on me. So apparently it's not a common thing to see... Oopsie :) 

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