Wojapi (pronouned woah JA(as in jaques) pee) is an Indian berry pudding. It was eaten in one form or another by most of the Native American tribes who used wild berries as part of their diet. It consists of whatever berries are available boiled down, with sugar or corn syrup added for sweetness and corn starch for thickness if desired. Wojapi (sometimes spelled wojape) is served at many Indian gatherings such as Pow Wows, giveaways, and sundances. It can be eaten on fry bread, as a desert, on ice cream, or as a side dish to meat.
There is no one recipe for wojapi, just as there is no one recipe for Indian fry bread. Everyone has their own favorite way of making it, and in my experience, most of them produce a pretty good result. Here are a couple of wojapi recipes.
This recipe is from Greg Bourland, Tribal chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux.
Fruits--Wild Choke Cherry, plum, sand cherry, currant, buffalo berry, or
grape. All wild, all found on the Great Plains.
Recipe: Ingred-- Fruit, Wild Corn Flour, Honey
Mash fruit, boil pulp for about one hour at low heat, strain through a
cheese cloth type cloth, (This first cut is used for fine jelley)
Boil again for an hour, remove seeds and half the pulp, add a white
sauce of water and flour to boiling fruit and water. Thicken and add
honey to taste. (This second cut is wojapi)
Crush seeds and remaining pulp, boil for hour. Strain juice and add
thickener, salt and a small amount of wild honey. (this final cut is
meat dressing or B-bQ sauce)
There you have it.
You can sub corn starch for wild corn flour if you have to. Sugar or
reg. honey for wild honey. Will taste different and won't be as natural
or nutritious, though.
This next recipe is mine, and has been developed from many sources. It is much simpler.
2 quarts of fruit..I usually use blackberries
2 cups sugar..adjust for your taste
Combine everything in a big kettle and boil it slowly down, stirring often until it has a thick syrupy consistency. If your blackberries were very ripe (I always include a few green ones because of the natural pectin) you may need to add some corn starch for thickening. Remove from heat and serve.