Ethiopian Cuisine (First Time)

Of all the ethnic foods commonly consumed, Chinese, Italian, and Mexican are some of the most popular though tailored to American tastes. That being said, not every person gets a chance to try out Ethiopian. Ethiopian cuisine is novel to me as it was my first time in trying it so I was excited for the opportunity.

Vegetarian Combo – various dishes such as humus fit fit, and azifa, beets, salad, etc arranged on Injera bread

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Injera bread – spongy flatbread essential in Ethiopian cuisine

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Traditionally, the tools in eating injera bread is with the fingers. This concept is different from we are used to in the west. The Injera bread is to be torn and then be used to grab the stews or sauces before tucking it into the mouth. This promotes camaraderie among people as everyone eats from the same plate. Afterwards, the injera bread holding up the sauces could be eaten itself as it would be soaked up with all the flavors in the end.

Some dips were spicy, which balanced out in the end. None of the spicy sauces exceed my spice tolerance so I was thankful though I think my spice tolerance level is above average in the States at least. I wonder if the same dishes would have a higher spice level in Ethiopia? Overall, the dish was enjoyable.

Sambusa 

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Filled with onions and meat, the pasties were to be dipped in the spicy sauce. The pasties were the meat to balance out the vegetarian plate I ordered. They weren’t too much for one person so there was room left for more dishes. If I knew how to make them, I would definitely eat them for a quick to go meal.

Overall, eating injera bread itself is filling so I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole meal could cover both lunch and dinner for the day. I would recommend sharing the Ethiopian dining experience especially for dishes with injera bread with some companions. As for the sambusas, I am a bit biased towards meat filled pasties no matter what the origins or variety but I think those would be favorable to the American palate.

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