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 Post subject: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 9:27 pm 
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We're trying to make Ethiopian food here in my home to try new stuff but everything we made so far turned out a little bland. It's always more flavorful in the restuaunt so we have a lot of work to do. I have some vegan ghee that I like a lot. (flower is a damn good brand of vegan ghee) so everything looked vegan and we went at it. Things just don't seem right.

So I want tips and advice for what we should of done better from this forum and idea since I'm sure a bunch of you have good advice.

My girl who luckily still isn't locked up. (I should update the topic I made on that someday) searched online for recipes that don't include the tiny pine cones (we couldn't find them in austin) and she had us use \these ones.
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/ ... ere-104015
http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-d ... pe=1364702
http://theberberediaries.wordpress.com/ ... kil-gomen/
http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipe/ ... and-onions
http://eatrelatelove.com/blog/kik-alich ... w-lentils/
http://www.whats4eats.com/vegetables/me ... obodry.htm

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 9:53 pm 
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I've only made ethiopian red lentils and split peas so far. My red lentils were spot on with the first try, the split peas were just okay the first time but I realized I needed a few hours of soaking and an extra hour of boiling to get that mushy restaurant consistency I like. I don't use ghee, but I do use the same berbere recipe you posted, minus fenugreek because I don't yet have any and with regular (good) chili powder instead of the dried new mexico chiles.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 9:58 pm 
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Smuggling Raisins
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dakini wrote:
I've only made ethiopian red lentils and split peas so far. My red lentils were spot on with the first try, the split peas were just okay the first time but I realized I needed a few hours of soaking and an extra hour of boiling to get that mushy restaurant consistency I like. I don't use ghee, but I do use the same berbere recipe you posted, minus fenugreek because I don't yet have any and with regular (good) chili powder instead of the dried new mexico chiles.

I have an indan grocery store next door so I had fenugreek and I used dried kashmiri chili instead of mexican ones.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:05 am 
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I'm kind of surprised no one has yet pointed out that you need this:

http://kitteekake.blogspot.com/p/papa-tofu-loves-ethiopian-food.html

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:41 am 
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+1 to Papa Tofu Loves Ethiopian Food - everything I've tried has been super good!

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 8:07 am 
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You need to make niter kibbeh, the spiced butter/oil base! The recipes you linked to try to replicate that flavor by just including oil and spices, but that flavored butter/oil has way more flavor oomph. Kittee's zine has an excellent recipe, but you can probably find one online if you're in a financial bind.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 8:54 am 
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Desdemona wrote:
I'm kind of surprised no one has yet pointed out that you need this:

http://kitteekake.blogspot.com/p/papa-tofu-loves-ethiopian-food.html

This is fantastic, but kittee also has some Ethiopian recipes on her blog here.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:53 am 
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I cheat a bit and buy ethiopian spices from places that sell it.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 10:02 am 
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i think, in general, restaurants use a lot more salt and fat than people normally use in home cooking, so it's possible that using more salt might make it taste more like restaurant food.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 10:53 am 
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Thanks for the links for more ideas and reciepes.

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:11 pm 
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Isa's Appetite For Reduction has some really good Ethiopian style recipes. I think there are different kinds of Ethiopian, too, if that makes sense. tonight actually I made the curried cabbage and peas from AFR, and was totally alarmed by the amount of curry powder i was instructed in the recipe to put in. But it worked! It reminded my household of a favorite version of a cabbage/carrot/pea spicy thing our fave. Ethiopian place serves. So i guess the tip is, use more spices! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 10:59 am 
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Looking at the kik alicha recipe, mine (which is from Exotic Ethiopian Cooking) uses waaaay more oil. I tried making it a few times unsuccessfully because the amount of oil in the recipe just floored me and I figured it MUST be a typo, but when I finally just made it the way it was written I had delicious results. Anyway my recipe uses equal volumes dried split peas and oil, so 4x as much. And of course salt is key. With that much split peas I would start with a teaspoon and add more until it tasted good.


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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2012 6:55 am 
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I've got Kittee's zine, and am eager to try some of the recipes, but I, er, don't understand niter kibbeh. Firstly, if I let margarine simmer for a quarter of an hour (and then heat it again when I use the finished niter kibbeh in a recipe) won't it become unhealthy? And secondly, since I have to add onions and spices separately in most of the recipes, and in larger quantities than supplied by the niter, will the niter really add any flavour?


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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2012 10:38 am 
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misshendrie wrote:
I've got Kittee's zine, and am eager to try some of the recipes, but I, er, don't understand niter kibbeh. Firstly, if I let margarine simmer for a quarter of an hour (and then heat it again when I use the finished niter kibbeh in a recipe) won't it become unhealthy? And secondly, since I have to add onions and spices separately in most of the recipes, and in larger quantities than supplied by the niter, will the niter really add any flavour?


It should still add some depth that plain oil wouldn't add. But no, simmering for a while won't make your margarine all cancerous and stuff if you keep the temperature low/medium.


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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2012 7:08 am 
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Super excited to order that zine! thanks ppk community for delicious suggestions.


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 Post subject: Re: Problems trying to make ethiopian food.
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 8:50 am 
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Hi, just thought I'd post back about the niter kibbeh, in case other people had the same doubts I had. Niter is fabulous! Even just the smell when you make it, and when you cook with it later. It really does seem to add flavour, and is a very easy way (with some more onion, garlic and ginger) to spice up kale, for instance!
I think I'll make it with coconut oil next time though, as I'm not that fond of margarine, and as mine didn't go solid again after I heated it. Now it's all gooey; still tastes great though.


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