Friday, January 22, 2010

Injera (Traditional Ethiopian Bread) Recipe


My family and I were recently in Ethiopia bringing home our youngest child. Now that we are home, we have decided that it would be a lot of fun to incorporate some traditional Ethiopian recipes into our everyday American lives. A staple food in Ethiopian meals is Injera. It's a sour, thicker-than-a-crepe but thinner-than-a-pancake bread that the Ethiopian folks eat at almost every meal. Why? It's cheap and you can put lots of yummy tasting sauces, meats, or anything else that you can think of right on top. It's eaten with your hands and used to scoop up, soak up, and clean up your plate and, for as strange and sour tasting as it is on its own, it is fantastic with almost anything on top. Traditional Injera is pretty long and then rolled up. When we make it, the best we can do is to find our biggest skillet and go from there. This week, we tackle Injera. In the next few weeks that follow, we'll tackle a couple of different kinds of Wat (that stuff that I said goes on the Injera). This past Little Christmas (Epiphany), my family went multi-cultural, eating Ethiopian and Guatemalan food (with some Fettucini Alfredo thrown in for good measure). So, after the Injera and the Wat, we can tackle, Tamales, Arrepas, Empenadas and, well, Fettucini Alfredo. Enjoy!

(read recipe carefully - its takes a few days to make)
2 cups Teff Flour (we found it in the natural food section of our supermarket)
2 cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 tsp. Salt
5 cups Luke Warm Water

1) Mix Teff Flour, All Purpose Flour, and Salt well.
2) Add Water, stirring constantly until combined.
3) Let stand, covered with a dish towel, undisturbed, at room temperature overnight.

4) In the morning, stir with a wooden spoon (should already be slightly bubbly at the surface, with the fermenting water rising to the top, and should be beginning to smell sour).
5) Cover again and let stand overnight.

6) Stir again.
7) Cover and let stand overnight.

8) Check your batter. If it is very bubbly and sour smelling, your ready to go. Otherwise, cover and let stand for one 1 more day.
9) Stir the batter until it is combined well.
10) Heat a large, lightly-oiled skillet over medium high heat.
11) Add 1/3 cup of the batter to the skillet.
12) As the batter cooks, I gently rocked the skillet, moving the batter around - when the batter stopped moving, I knew it was cooked through.
13) Using a metal spatula, without cooking the other side of the batter, remove the Injera from the skillet (you can fold it, roll it, or leave it flat - in Ethiopia it was rolled).
14) Repeat until all of the batter is used (adding more oil to the skillet, if necessary)
15) Serve with almost anything - chicken, vegetables, meat or, of course, Wat.

Thanks so much to Ashley Skabar at for providing lots of parts of this recipe!

No comments: