Homemade Ethiopian Food

Ethiopian restaurants are nowhere to be found in Greensboro so we decided to make our own. It my was my husband Mark’s idea to do it. We’ve made the red lentil dish in the past thanks to some Ethiopian spices that were given to us by my aunt and uncle’s housekeeper Mimi (in Lebanon). But Mark wanted to go all out with the full deal, so that’s what we did. We made the traditional Injera bread, yellow split peas, red lentils (recipe below), and Ethiopian collard greens (Gomen). The injera was really bitter in the beginning and we had to add some salt, sugar, and lemon juice to help the bitterness. Apparently the recipe calls for you to make the batter 3 days in advance and let it sit and ferment. We didn’t want to wait that long so Mark found a recipe that has you add yeast and just wait 1 day. Our injera was much darker than the injera we have had at Ethiopian restaurants. Maybe they mix all purpose flour with the teff flour (which is what we used)? If anyone has a good recipe for teff let us know!

The collards and red lentils were delish. The yellow split peas were good but had a little too much salt and turmeric. We followed the recipe to a “T” so next time we’d just put less salt and turmeric.

It was fun to explore cooking the Ethiopian food and we’ll definitely do it again! Share some other recipes if you have them!

The Misir Wat (red lentils) recipe is as follows:

1 cup split red lentils (rinsed well)

1 inch of ginger grated

2 cloves garlic grated

1 cup minced red onion

2-3 teaspoons Indian spice mix (Berberé)

2 tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

To make the lentils cook quicker, soak them in water for about half an hour (if you don’t have time to soak don’t worry about it). Heat up olive oil and add onions. Sautee for a  few minutes. Add garlic and ginger and sautee about 30 seconds. Add in lentils, spice mix (the amount depends on how spicy you like it), salt, and pepper and mix all together. After mixed, add about 3 cups of water and cook covered for about 20-30 minutes. Stirring every 10 minutes or so. If you soak the lentils you may need a little less water. But just keep an eye on it.  Once done, taste and add salt/pepper if needed. If the lentils are not done then continue to add water until they are cooked. Ours ended up a little mushy in the end which I liked. Another version of this recipe has you add some tomato paste/sauce to it. That version is good too.

Here are links to the other recipes:

Collard Greens

Yellow split peas

Injera

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