Indonesia Eats

Ethiopian Cooking Class

Having the opportunity to take a cooking class for another ethnic is very valuable to me. My introduction to Ethiopian food was begun in 2008 in which I tried one of Ethiopian restaurants in Winnipeg. I’m very lucky to live in such a diverse city like Winnipeg. Also if you see my old post in 2010 where I went to the 7th Annual Lieutenant Governor’s Winter Festival in Brandon, I was fortunate to see the traditional Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony. Learning about other cultures is fascinating!

When Good Food Club-West Broadway Development Corporation offered this class with a native Ethiopian instructor, I didn’t want to miss this opportunity. The best way to learn an ethnic food is from the native itself. Although we didn’t learn how to make injera (Ethiopian flatbread), I know where to get them. At most Indian/Caribbean and Middle East stores in Winnipeg, injera can be found easily and pretty cheap.

Rolling and place injeras in the massob


Speaking about the class, I learnt about new food terms. Berberé (red pepper spice paste), kosseret (Lippia adoensis) and niter kebbeh. Berbere is a mix chili and spices (garlic, ginger, dried sacred basil, korarima aka Ethiopian cardamom, rue, white and black pepper, and fenugreek. which can be in wet paste and dry forms. Kosseret is still a family of lemon verbena (Lippia citriodora) while niter kebbeh is very similar to ghee (clarified butter) but it’s simmered with many different spices such as cumin, coriander, turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, or nutmeg before straining.

The foods that were made at the class were Misier Key Wot (Spicy Red Lentil Stew), Gomen Be Siga (Collard Greens with Goat Stew), Kik Alicha (Split Peas Stew), and Siga Wot (Beef Stew). To serve the foods, we need to layer the injera and place all other dishes on top of it. Injera is used to pick up the food as we don’t use any cutlery.

Here is my injera complete with the salad as well.

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7 thoughts on “Ethiopian Cooking Class”

  1. I love Ethiopian food! It’s pretty complicated to cook though unless you have access to berbere and niter kebbeh; vital ingredients like koseret, and the particular kind of chili used for berbere, are usually only available if you have some good Ethiopian contacts.

    Injera is actually not all that hard to make, although getting it just right is a bit tricky. You need to make a pancake batter out of flour (self-raising, I think?) and water, and then let it sit and ferment for a couple of days. Then cook it on a non-stick pan. It takes some practice to get it right though; I don’t cook Ethiopian enough to have mastered it.
    The original injera is made from a grain called teff, but I’ve found that impossible to acquire in my part of the world.

  2. I really love Ethiopian food—thanks for reminding me, I haven’t had it in ages! Here is DC we are fortunate to have a considerable community and some excellent Ethiopian restaurants.

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