I·ATE Food Term of the Week: Bouneschlupp

August 17, 2019 12:28 pm

Bouneschlupp: A green bean soup from Luxembourg

Soup is considered to be one of the first dishes that appeared in the dawn of prehistorical times. Thanks to the invention of waterproof containers which were made in the form of clay vessels in about 20,000 B.C., humans were able to boil water with bones of their animals’ hunt, and have what is nowadays known as the stock 1, or boil water with vegetables and roots and prepare the first version of a vegetarian soup.

Linguistically, the word Soup originates from the PIE (Proto-Indo-European) etymological root seue– meaning “take liquid” which was transformed into sub– and led to the Proto-Germanic etymological root sup– and the Middle Dutch one sop– meaning “sop, broth”. Latins had the word suppa meaning “bread soaked in broth”, French in the 13th century talked about soupe meaning “broth, soup”, and the final form of the word first appears in 1650s.

It is of high interest how soup did not only conquer people’s hearts as a dish but dominated some conceptual fields of their lives with its metaphorical use. For example, the phrase Primordial Soup was the term first introduced by the Soviet biologist Alexander Oparin in 1924, referring to the solution rich in organic compounds in the primitive oceans of the Earth from which life is thought to have originated.

Also, the “Stone Soup” is a famous story common in many traditional storytelling heritage of different cultures. The basic core of the story is a stone used to make a soup which attracts people so much that they offer to the poor makers of the stone soup various ingredients so that this new, seemingly exciting and different soup, gets even tastier. The result is that the poor makers of the soup keep the ingredients offered by all those who want to taste the soup, take away the stone and the primarily inedible soup turns into one of the tastier soups, proving the importance of sharing and cooperation.

The soup we will talk about today is a Green Beans soup, one of the most popular ones in the Luxembourgish cuisine. It is called Bouneschlupp and it is probably a favorite dish of all native Luxembourgers.  So, what is nicer than sharing an eating habit of Luxembourg, a multinational core in the centre of Europe, which hosts all kinds of cuisine of its multicultural population?

Bouneschlupp is a stew of fresh green beans and potatoes. It has numerous variations depending on the preference of the cook, what other vegetables one might add or other ways used for tying it instead of potatoes. Léa Linster, arguably one of the best-known Luxembourgish chefs, proposes the addition of Celeriac and leek.

Bouneschlupp basic recipe

Ingredients:

500 g fresh green beans (bush beans or broad beans)

 4-5 potatoes

1 large potato, floury (for binding)

2 small leeks

1 tablespoon of vegetable oil

3 litres of water

2 cubes of poultry bouillon (optional)

5 cubes of vegetable broth (or handmade vegetable broth)

2 onions

2 cloves of garlic

Branch of fresh parsley

Chevril (dehydrated or fresh)

2 teaspoons of dried savory

Salt and pepper


Preparation: Cut the green beans in sticks of 1 to 2 cm. Do the same with the leeks. Cut the potatoes in small or medium cubes. Grate the floury large potato. In a large saucepan heat the oil and sweatset the chopped onions and garlic along with the leeks.  Add the beans in the saucepan with the broth cubes and the water. Simmer for 15-20 minutes depending on the type of bean and the size of the cut. Then add the potatoes, the grated floury potato and the savory and boil for another 10 minutes. Finally, season with salt and pepper. You can enrich the dish with sour cream or any other kind of cream. The soup is ready. Gudde Appetit! as they say in Luxembourgish.

References:

“Bouneschlupp” – Luxemburger Grüne Bohnensuppe. foodblog: paules ki(t)chen. http://www.paules.lu/2009/10/•-“bouneschlupp”-luxemburger-grune-bohnensuppe/. Published February 7, 2010. Accessed June 24, 2019.

Soup (n.). Index. https://www.etymonline.com/word/soup. Accessed June 24, 2019.

Soup, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soup. Published June 9, 2019. Accessed June 24, 2019.

Stone Soup. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stone_Soup. Published June 12, 2019. Accessed June 24, 2019.


Written by Maria Papamargariti, Greek and English Philologist, Substitute Teacher in ISL School (Luxembourg) and Study Visitor at the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament in Luxembourg. She holds a Bachelor in Greek Language and Literature (Philology) and a Bachelor in English Language and Literature, both from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. She has published three books in the field of children’s literature, Books publication link. She speaks English, French and Greek. At present, she is completing her Master Studies in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts in the University of Luxembourg.

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