My Citizens – few things are as delightful to your majestic leader – the mighty TFD! – as Ethiopian cuisine, truly one of the finest on the planet!
The food of Ethiopia is sadly not well known to most, which is a pity as it takes many of the flavors of Indian cuisine (and many unique ones of its own!) and harmonizes them in a way that is unlike any other. I have posted many Ethiopian recipes here on TFD (search for them, you’ll thank me) and you’ll understand how flavorful this cuisine truly is. It’s now time to share with you what many consider to be the national dish of Ethiopia – doro wot (aka stewed chicken).
Wot is an Ethiopian and Eritrean stew or curry that may be prepared with chicken, beef, lamb, a variety of vegetables, spice mixtures such as berbere, and niter kibbeh, a seasoned clarified butter.
Several properties distinguish wots from stews of other cultures. Perhaps the most obvious is an unusual cooking technique: the preparation of a wot begins with chopped onions slow cooked, without any fat or oil, in a dry skillet or pot until much of their moisture has been driven away. Fat (usually niter kibbeh) is then added, often in quantities that might seem excessive by modern Western standards, and the onions and other aromatics are sautéed before the addition of other ingredients. This method causes the onions to break down and thicken the stew.
Wot is traditionally eaten with injera, a spongy flat bread made from the millet-like grain known as teff. There are many types of wots. The popular ones are doro wat and siga wat, (Ge’ez: ሥጋ śigā) made with beef.
Doro wat is one such stew, made from chicken and sometimes hard-boiled eggs; the ethnologist Donald Levine records that doro wat (Amharic: ዶሮ ወጥ? dōrō we̠t’, Tigrinya: ደርሆ ጸብሒ? derhō tsebhi) is the most popular traditional food in Ethiopia, often eaten as part of a group who share a communal bowl and basket of injera.
On the fantastic Ethiopian food blog by Harry Kloman at ethiopianfood.wordpress.com, it is noted that:
“Doro wot is the ultimate expression of highland Ethiopian cuisine in its most complex form,” he tells me. “Many talented cooks don’t take it lightly because they know if they do it right – any shortcut will show in the end product – they can establish a sort of bragging rights in their circle. The amount of attention given to the preparation of a good doro wot is always self evident for the person eating it. You just can’t fake it with a Crock Pot.”
Citizens, here are links to my recipes for the Niter Kibbeh curried butter, the berbere spice mix and injera – you can also order the spices, T’ej (Ethiopian honey wine) and butter pre-made from Brundo, a fantastic source for all sorts of Ethiopian staples.
I have every confidence you will love this recipe, my Citizens – enjoy the true flavors of the country in their national dish! 🙂
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