Okay, Fridays are not the best day for me to be blogging considering Iam usually the most social on this night. So, because I'm a genius, I decidedI'd do a double feature blog tonight. I'm leaving the house in 1 hour and Istill have to fix my hair but, obviously, blogging comes first. Here we go!

I loveEthiopian food. A lot. I think it's mostly that, even as an omni, I have alwaysloved legumes way more than is normal, or maybe even healthy. The veggie dishesin Ethiopian cuisine are really heavy on the red lentils. Dishes that aren'tlentil based often have dark, leafy greens, potatoes or beets in them. I loveall of these things, too, and only slightly less than I love legumes.

Traditionally,Ethiopian food is served on a communal platter. Instead of your common knife,fork and spoon, all of the dishes are eaten with your hands using injera as autensil. What is injera you ask? Only the most awesome bread ever! To quoteWikipedia, injera 'is a yeast-risen flat bread with a unique, slightlyspongy texture. Traditionally made out of teff flour, it is anational dish in Ethiopia and Eritrea.' I adore the texture.Spongy and melty with bubbles, mmm! I find it to have a light, citrusy taste.

If youhaven't tried Ethiopian food yet, please go do so. As quickly as possible. Goright now. Here are two ways to get the delicious goop in your mouth, one justfor people with access to Toronto, the other for anyone with access to amailbox.


RestaurantReview: Addis Ababa, Toronto

I've tried out a bunch of places in Toronto, (we have many). I alwaysget the veggie platter, which is available on every menu. It let's me try agood sampling of what the restaurant has to offer and is just way morepleasurable to eat than one huge pile of the same tasting lentils. My favouriteplatter is from Addis Ababa onQueen Street West (near Gladstone).


Yeson Beye Ainetu  - $13.99
Combination of Shiro Wat, Yekik Wat, Yatakit Wat, Gommen Wat, Beets,Misr and Fasolia.

Shiro Wat - I don't find shiro on a lot of veggieplatters, which sucks because it is my most favourite of favourites. I oftenend up getting a side order off the menu because it is just that good. (Idiscuss this dish more below.)

Yekik Wat - Split peas in a mild sauce. This dish isgreat for cleaning the palate and letting your taste buds relax a bit after theother, more spicy dishes.

Yatakit Wat - Steamed vegetables seasoned with garlic andginger. The veg happens to be potatoes and cabbage, which really speaks to myPolish heritage. Also, garlic and ginger? Ohhh, if I haaave to.

Gommen Wat - Collared greens hard cooked and spicedwith garlic and ginger. Every good vegan knows how important it is to get thoseleafy greens in everyday. I sometimes find collards too bitter but, howeverthey cook them here is okay by me.

Beets - Um, well. They're beets. With onions andgarlic and ginger. I'm not sure I really need to explain why you would wantthis in your mouth.

Misr - Black lentil sauce seasoned with oliveoil, onions, garlic and ginger. I know these dishes are starting to soundsimilar. But, while they all have similar seasoning, they somehow all havetheir own character and flavours. I swear.

Fasolia - Green beans sautéed with olive oil,garlic, onions, baby carrots, tomatoes and ginger. The veg is always fresh andjuicy, which is a nice complement to all of the starch going down.

And every Ethiopian platterI've ever had has come with salad. It's pretty basic - lettuce, tomatoes andsometimes something fancy like a cucumber. The dressing is similar to Italianflavour, the bottled kind. Recipes I've seen use pretty basic ingredients likeoil and lemon juice.

*****

The Tofu Princess LovesPapa Tofu Loves Ethiopian Food.

I'm not gluten-free. I doread some xgfx blogs, though. I happened across Kittee Berns and her Papa Tofu zines.In particular, Papa Tofu LovesEthiopian Food. We ordered one and it arrived in the mail this week!I'm beyond, beyond excited to make some injera and shiro and gorge myself. I'mgoing to get so fat on just these two things.


So shiro, my favourite.Shiro is a bit more difficult to get in a restaurant and seriously difficult tomake in your own kitchen simply because it requires a special, magic powder. It'scalled mit'in shiro and is made from roasted chickpeas, fave beans, peas andother legumes mixed with berbere. (Berbere is the hot spice blend that flavoursmany dishes. (It's a staple of the cuisine, Ethiopian isn't Ethiopian withoutit.) I'm most excited for the ye'shiro wet recipe in this zine. I'm not surewhen I'll actually make it, considering how crazy this VeganMoFo is turning outto be. I'm going to make it as soon as possible, though. You'll know it'shappened when I disappear for a few days. It's because I'm in a shiro-inducedcoma.


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