Bread Baking Babes: Injera and too much food!

Last month's Bread Baking Babe challenge was hosted by my friend Mary, aka Breadchick, so you know it was going to be something challenging involving bread, right?


The challenge was to make Ethiopian Injera bread, which isn't hard to make at all. If you can find the Teff flour to make it.

I couldn't.

So Mary extended the deadline for me and shipped me off a present, that included a bag of Teff flour. (Which I've since found in two different stores, but hey, I couldn't find it when I was looking for it earlier!)

Tonight was finally the night, my Injera starter was on day 5, the minimum needed for making the bread, I had friends coming over to try everything with me (so I would not have to eat all of it alone.)

Meet some of my eating helpers: BC, her son and her daughter (isn't her hair just screaming 'Summertime fun!'), sporting the newest look, fancy dishes in which to pile high the Ethiopian food.

Now the traditional and proper way to eat Ethiopian involves a huge platter, with Injera bread covering the bottom, all the various dishes loaded on top of the bread. You use your fingers to pull off pieces of the bread from the outside and eat the dishes with the bread as your scoop.

We couldn't do that tonight as BC's daughter is glutten intolerant, so instead, I put out all the dishes and the Injera and everyone made their own platters, piling things up high on it. Here is what I made:

Yetakelt Wot, also known as Yeti to those of us eating tonight, a vegetable stew that was slightly spicy and wonderful. I submerged some hard boiled eggs in the Wot, which I've had before the one time I had Ethiopian, and let people choose if they wanted one or not.

I doubled this recipe, thinking I would need extra with lots of people coming for dinner (we had 5 friends over for dinner, but dinner included non-Ethiopian items for people who would not enjoy and/or appreciate it.)

Ayib Be Gomen, also known as "All Be Going", a cold dish involving collard greens and cottage cheese, which was surprisingly good. And a big help tempering some of the spice.

(As an aside, I'd never had collard greens before, and dislike cottage cheese, but I liked this. I will have to try the collards some time without the cheese and spices.)

Ethiopian Lentils with Yam, which we dubbed Yentil when I messed up the name of it. Something else I doubled, since it didn't seem it would make much. I have left overs, but not many. I liked this and hoped my boys would as I'd like to introduce some lentils into our diet and rotation. (Unfortunately, this didn't go well with my guys, one tried and the other two refused.)

Doro Wot, a chicken stew with the same baseas the Yetakelt Wot, which was dubbed Dodo. I followed Breadchick's advice and used boneless, skinless chicken thighs in this, which was good advice. I didn't double this recipe, thinking it would be fine as is and was happy with what we had. Plus I have enough left overs for my lunch this week.

Oh, and the smell of the Niter-Kebbeh (the butter you use to make everything) was amazing! My house smelled so good, and the butter turns out a pretty green. I only wish the pretty color of it had shown up in the pictures, then I would have posted one to show. But like the Berbere (the spicy spice mixture used in the Wot's), pictures did not work well for these.

Finally, the entire reason for this feast, the Injera bread.

Now I will be honest and say I messed up my bread slightly.

Yes, I read the recipe in advance.

Did I remember any of it?

No, of course not, don't be silly.

I fed my starter early this afternoon, remembering that I needed 4 hours or so of rest time before I could make the breads and since we had people coming for 6 pm, thought I'd left enough time.

What I didn't remember was that after that 4 hours, I was going to need an additional 4-6 hours!

So I rattled off a quick email to Breadchick, then took a brave leap and faked it. I left the starter for 2 1/2 hours, instead of at least 4, then went on to the next step, adding the self rising flour, put it somewhere warm and left it for maybe 2 1/2 - 3 hours.

Then under the supervision of BC and her children, we made bread. Not pretty bread, but tasty bread. Bread that did indeed get spongier and softer after it cooled, and was wonderful with all the dishes I made.

My only problem? I have lots of food left and almost no Injera bread!

Good thing I can pick some up at the store tomorrow (and now understand the big exciting sign at my former corner store that said, "We carry Injera!")

This was alot of fun and very tasty. I look forward to making this again and trying more new recipes. Just next time, maybe I won't make quite so much!

Big hugs and thanks to Mary for the Teff flour (and I didn't forget my other one, I just am not ready to show what I did with it yet!)

If you'd like to try any of these recipes, please see The Sour Dough for all the details.


Megan said...

What time was the party tonight? Hmm, my invite must have gotten lost....

I've never had Ethiopian Food, but it certainly looks interesting. And you really went all out!

Jessie "photocopier sales" Collin said...

i cant really describe exactly how does your food looks like.. but this one is really unique

Brisbane forklifts said...

Is this your own recipe? very unique

BC said...

Yentil was my favourite!

breadchick said...

Your injera and all the dishes look fantastic! I wish I lived closer, I would have been over to to help with the left overs.

Fantastic job on your injera and thanks for "baking" with us!

I can't wait to see what you did with the other little package ;-)

Cookie baker Lynn said...

Great job! All the dishes you made to go with the injera look splendid.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Awesome! That last photo is a total beauty!
Terrible Jenny, you and I seem to have a very similar reading problem but at least you got the self rising flour in, I totally omitted it the first time around.

Lien said...

You really did make a feast out of it! So many wonderful dishes you made.So glad you enjoyed it too!

Karen Baking Soda said...

What fun!! I love those plates! (have to admit that on first glance I thougth they were holding fancy packed gifts..oy!)
Incredible feast you served there, what an effert and I can imagine the fun at the table.
Had to laugh at your "faking" it. I did exactly the same. Planned for 4 hours rest but forgot about the other 4..

NKP said...

So great that you had an injera party!
I think we all forgot or fudged something or other on this one, but had great results anyway. Injera seems pretty forgiving.
Congrats on a job well done!