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Interview with Caroline from Bona Tapa NL

door Linda Terrizzi

A yu'i Korsou with Spanish roots – that must be a culinary feast! And indeed… Caroline Julián Labraña has turned her passion into her work in the form of “Bona Tapa Nederland”.

Yu'i Korsou with Spanish roots

Caroline, 42, was born and raised Curaçao. She lived on the island throughout her childhood, until she moved to the Netherlands for school purposes. Now she lives and works for a long time in beautiful Haelen. When we ask her what she misses most about the Antilles, she replies:

“I miss the certain atmosphere you have there. A certain ease; the less stressed life. But also being together on a porch with my family and/or friends and eating deliciously all evening. Or drive the pick-up to Westpunt and stay there all day and have a barbecue on the beach. Yes, I can really miss that sometimes. Oh, and one more thing: coconut ice cream from 'super mi lucha' and the fact that you can get 'bloki ice cream' everywhere at the snack bars… too many to mention. You still remain a yu'i Korsou.”

Spanish vs. Krioyo kitchen

Caroline's favorite krioyo dishes are stobá with funchi, fried masbangu and string beanchi. "There is too much sweets!" she finds.

Even though Bona Tapa is focused on Spanish cuisine, you can still taste the Caribbean influences here and there in Caroline's cooking. The empanadillas (pastries) in particular tend to lean towards the Antillean version. No problem, according to Caroline… “there are so many similarities between Spanish and Antillean cuisine that it fits in perfectly!”

tapa

Bona Tapa Netherlands has existed since 2013. Caroline has turned her hobby into her work. Strongly influenced by her Catalan father and her Spanish family, Caroline has developed a huge passion for cooking.

Tapas… eating all afternoon!

Initially she mainly focused on tapas and paellas… after all, she has always had a preference for 'small bites'. “You can keep eating them all afternoon and evening. That's what I like about it," says Caroline.

The most ordered dish on her menu are the albondigas (meatballs in tomato sauce). When we ask her which dish she prefers to make, Caroline answers 'croquetas' (croquettes). She makes them in all shapes and sizes: with Manchego cheese, Serrano ham, chicken, mushrooms or cod.

Making a real authentic paella is also one of Caroline's favorite activities. "The layout of the dish is especially great to do!"

paella

Caroline's best cooking tip

Finally, we asked Caroline about her best cooking tip. This is what she finally replied:

“Cook with passion, people will definitely taste it. Take the time to cook and work in a tidy kitchen! ”

Interested? You can find Caroline's work on www.bonatapa.nl and you can follow her and her company on www.facebook.com/bonatapa.nl


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