Wat and Injera is the traditional meal of Ethiopia. Maybe now, more and more people are branching away, but up until very recently, almost every meal in Ethiopia consisted of Wat and Injera. Basically, Wat is a stew and Injera is a panacake.

Wat is a spicy stew either vegetarian, chicken, or goat. And when I say spicy - I'm quite serious. Take the hottest meal you've ever had in a Mexican restaurant, multiply the spiciness by a factor of ten and you are approaching Wat.

Injera is a very sour pancake that is eaten with the wat. The sourness of the injera takes some of the fire away from the wat so that together they form a very tasty meal.

Injera is a grey, 2 foot in diameter pancake. To serve the meal, you spread several injera on a tray so that they overlap each other but completely cover the tray. You then ladle the different wats onto the injera into separate piles. Each diner is given a rolled up injera which acts as: silverware, bread roll, napkin. You break off a piece of you injera and use it to scoop up some wat and then pop it into your mouth. It is also a sign of friendship to feed one another! After you've eaten your injera, all that will be left is the original injera that had covered the tray. This is the most delicious part of the meal! You now start tearing apart the injera that has been saturated by the Wat. As soon as these last injera are gone, the meal is over! - no washing dishes, putting silverware away, etc.!

The traditional injera is about 2 feet in diameter - however the Ethiopian women learn to make this as young girls. So it is pretty ambitious to expect you to create such large ones. Find your largest skillet and that will be quite large enough.

Here's the recipe:

  • 3/4 cup teff, ground fine
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • salt
  • sunflower or other vegetable oil

1. Mix ground teff with 3 1/2 cups water and let stand in a bowl covered with a dish towel, at room temperature, until it bubbles and has turned sour. This may take as long as 3 days. The fermenting mixture should be the consistency of pancake batter (which is exactly what it is).

2. Stir in salt, a little at a time, until you can barely detect the taste.

3. Lightly oil your largest skillet. Heat over medium-high heat. Then proceed as you would with a normal pancake or crepe. Pour in enough batter to cover the bottom of the skillet. About 1/4 cup will make a thin pancake covering the surface of an 8-inch skillet if you spread the batter around immediately by turning and rotating the skillet in the air. This is the classic French method for very thin crepes. Injera is not supposed to be paper thin so you should use a bit more batter than you would for crepes, but less than you would for a flapjack. It should be about 1/3 inch thick.

4. Cook briefly, until holes form in the injera and the edges lift from the pan. Remove and let cool.

Yields 10 to 12 injeras.

A couple of "Ferengies" (foreigners) enjoying a delicious meal of Wat and Injera on a traditional Masab (basket table)

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Musical Saws, including a free tutorial - visit Musical Saw
fun Crayon Craft software - visit Crayon By Number
Beauty and the Beast - visit Beauty and the Beast costume rentals