In Summary
  • Coffee brown coloured mounds of what seemed to me like curries were brought and I was torn between wanting to savour it and inhale it.
  • Minchet is meat dish often placed at the center of a Maheberawi (mixed meat plate). This ground meat stew is made from simmered red onions mixed with Berbere and ground beef It’s often served with a boiled egg.
  • Ethiopia is where coffee was first discovered. The country’s coffee is acclaimed for its potent, pungent, winey quality and distinct wildness in its acidity.

When I visited Abyssinia recently I was introduced to the land’s age old delicacy. With friends we sauntered through the veins of Addis, amongst the skyscrapers glitter and into a random eatery.

The restaurant was full. An old couple was dining side by side studiously bent over their meals. A group of young women in their twenties collapsing with helpless giggles.

Pancake-like Injera bread was set before us; stretching around in a huge circular tin plate. Coffee-brown coloured mounds of what seemed to me like curries were brought and I was torn between wanting to savour it and inhale it. We all tore through Injera bread and chowed down with aromatic beef stew. The aroma and communal style of dining was interesting Our hearts melted with pleasure. I wanted to learn more about Ethiopian delicacies.

Upon my return, I was on the hunt for delight of Ethiopian cuisine in Nairobi. The cuisine follows the culture enriched by millennia of long distance trade and exchange with the Middle East, Asia and the Far East. The food is prepared with creativity and the end result is a delicacy that is unique and extraordinarily flavourful.

ETHIOPIAN MEAT DISHES

Doro Wat

Doro Wat is a flavoured chicken stew is one Ethiopian signature dish. Ethiopian .Traditionally, an Ethiopian girl would demonstrate her culinary prowess by preparing a Doro Wat for her fiancé’s family. A proof that she was "wife material". The last shreds of traditional practises hang is in remote villages in Ethiopia. Doro wat involves slow cooking red onions, Berbere and chicken parts for at least two hours until the right blend of flavours has been achieved.

Key Wat

Key Wat (Spicy Beef Stew) served at Yejoka Garden Restaurant, Hurlingham. PHOTO| TOM MWIRARIA

Key Wat (Spicy Beef Stew) is another meat dish with meat chunks and served with a boiled egg on top, or in the middle of a mixed platter.

Minchet

Minchet is meat dish often placed at the centre of a Maheberawi (mixed meat plate). This ground meat stew is made from simmered red onions mixed with Berbere and ground beef. It’s often served with a boiled egg.

Tibs

Tibs are meat cubes (beef or lamb) stir-fried with onions, peppers and other vegetables in niter kibbeh.

Often, twigs of rosemary are added to the mixture. Tibs can also be served spicy with some Berbere’s strong flavour.

Gomen Be Sega

Gomen Be Sega is meat with vegetables served with beef or lamb. The meat is simmered in plentiful amounts of niter kibbeh with greens and other vegetables like onions, carrots and cabbage and onions.

Kitfo and Gored Gored

Kifto is raw lean ground beef blended with Berbere, is a main dish of Ethiopia. While Gored Gored is raw cubes of the highest quality beef warmed slightly and spiced Ethiopian butter (niter kibbeh) and a rich flavouring of Berbere spice.

ETHIOPIAN VEGETARIAN DISHES

Page 1 of 2