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Ethiopian Food: Delicious!


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Hello all,

Aside from making a couple of supposed Ethiopian dishes over the past ten years, I wasn't familiar with the cuisine until yesterday, when I was lucky enough to run into the owner of Ah!Zeefa lentil spread in St. Louis at the Healthy Planet Expo. We started talking about Ethiopian restaurants in St. Louis, and along with a couple of friends ended up at her favorite for dinner. It really was excellent, and now I want to know more!!

I have two specific questions:

1) What would be the best Ethiopian cook book available in the US? I want to know how to make the sour teff crepes from scratch as well!

Also...

2) What city in the US would have the best selection of excellent Ethiopian restaurants? NYC? Any suggestions, as I'll be there in a few months.

Thank you for your help!

Very best,

Alan

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Chicago has at least 1 very, very good Ethiopian restaurant: Ethiopian Diamond

Maybe more... not sure how big the ethiopian community is in Chicago.

The injera bread (crepes) that you mention is fairly easy to make. They use a round electric skillet to cook the breads much like a pancake. I don't know how easy it is to find Teff though.

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For #2, DC has got to be in the running.  So many really good selections.

I believe that DC has the largest Ethiopian population in the United States. There definitely are a lot of great restaurants there.

I heard that philly has a good selection of Ethiopian restaurants and grocery stores.

sorry, but only have a hebrew ethiopian cookbook.

Cheers, Sarah

http://sarahmelamed.com/

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Seattle has a lot of Ethiopian and East African restaurants and stores, community centers, and population as well.

I haven't tried them all but find most are similar - very filling and inexpensive. We like Fana Cuisine as it is slightly more refined than most, with more distinct flavors than the well stewed style most offer.

My only cookbook with these recipes is "Extending the Table...a World Cookbook" put out bythe Mennonite Central Committee in 1991. Only half a dozen recipes from Ethiopia and I haven't made any.

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Chicago has at least 7 Ethiopian restaurants. I always loved Ras Dashen when I lived there. There was another called Addis Abeba, which has moved to the burbs but was also very good. Ethiopian Diamond is pretty average. Others: Blue Nile, Demera, Lalibela, Mama Desta's (very good). None of them are bad.

"A culture's appetite always springs from its poor" - John Thorne

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Chicago has at least 1 very, very good Ethiopian restaurant: Ethiopian Diamond

Maybe more... not sure how big the ethiopian community is in Chicago.

The injera bread (crepes) that you mention is fairly easy to make.  They use a  round electric skillet to cook the breads much like a pancake.  I don't know how easy it is to find Teff though.

I don't think making ingira (or yemenite Lachoch bread) is very easy. I have made lachoch, which is similar to ingira except that wheat flour is used and not teff. It is tricky to get the consistancy right. To make authentic bread you must have all those little holes on top, otherwise you end up with pancakes or crepes. I still have to get used to the teff flour, very different.

Cheers, Sarah

http://sarahmelamed.com/

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I have two specific questions:

1) What would be the best Ethiopian cook book available in the US?  I want to know how to make the sour teff crepes from scratch as well!

Two generally well-reviewed books:

D.J. Mesfin: Exotic Ethiopian Cooking. I have this book but have not cooked from it yet, partly because I lack ready access to teff, and partly because I have shied away from the remarkable amount of butter in many recipes.

Marcus Samuelsson: The Soul of a New Cuisine. This includes a few Ethiopian recipes in a pan-African cookbook.

eGullet thread discussing Ethiopian cookbooks: Ethiopian recipes (clicky)

2)  What city in the US would have the best selection of excellent Ethiopian restaurants?  NYC?  Any suggestions, as I'll be there in a few months.

I grew up near DC, so that is my standard for Ethiopian food. I have usually been disappointed when I have tried Ethiopian restaurants elsewhere.

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Not a cookbook, but a Saveur article about Ethiopian food in its April 2008 issue (No. 110). With recipes, of course.

The article is available in PDF format on the author's website here:

http://www.writerati.com/images/images/Ethiopia.pdf

More about the author here: http://www.writerati.com/

I like those giant wheels of bread and spicy sauces. :raz:

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Chicago has at least 7 Ethiopian restaurants. I always loved Ras Dashen when I lived there. There was another called Addis Abeba, which has moved to the burbs but was also very good. Ethiopian Diamond is pretty average. Others: Blue Nile, Demera, Lalibela, Mama Desta's (very good). None of them are bad.

I have tried Ethiopian Food once in Chicagoland long time ago, and I remember it was delicious! unfortunately I can't recall the name. And I had always wanted to eat Ethiopian food again, just didn't know where to go. Thanks for the names!

~Saraaaa

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Thank you to everyone. I am reading the Saveur article, and have ordered a couple of the cookbooks mentioned. Also, I found out yesterday that my local grocery carries Teff flour. Who knew?

Very best,

Alan

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Chicago has at least 7 Ethiopian restaurants. I always loved Ras Dashen when I lived there. There was another called Addis Abeba, which has moved to the burbs but was also very good. Ethiopian Diamond is pretty average. Others: Blue Nile, Demera, Lalibela, Mama Desta's (very good). None of them are bad.

Hah. We (DC) have a single block with seven Ethiopian restaurants. :wink:

Denver actually has some decent Ethiopian out along Colfax, if you ever find yourself out there.

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

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Chicago has at least 7 Ethiopian restaurants. I always loved Ras Dashen when I lived there. There was another called Addis Abeba, which has moved to the burbs but was also very good. Ethiopian Diamond is pretty average. Others: Blue Nile, Demera, Lalibela, Mama Desta's (very good). None of them are bad.

My first taste of Ethiopian food was at Ras Dashen. I loved it.

I haven't been back to Chicago since we moved to New York a year ago. If I ever get back, I will be making a bee line to Ras Dashen and Kukulu market.

If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe. - Carl Sagan

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