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Posted by on Dec 11, 2012 in missions, NonVeg | 0 comments

Doro Wat

Doro Wat

As the each day of anticipation pass by and we get closer to celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.I see some stark differences in how i am approaching this Christmas.I want to say,i have matured a little,gained bit of new insight about the reason for the season ,learnt a little.As a result,we have started few things and hoping that it sticks with us long enough to become tradition.
One of the great idea,i came across from Jessalyn,who blogs at desiringvirtue,one of my Favorite blog.She wraps each book ,carefully chosen,Christ centered Christmas book meticulously and let her kids open one book every day,leading to Christmas.I instantly fell in love with this idea.However,i know i am not as meticulous as Jessalyn,though i did entertained the idea of two little hands tearing wrapping paper and opening book each day excitedly in my imagination.
Christmas book

Christmas book

  • We don’t have 25 distinct Christ centered Christmas books.So i am supplementing from the library.I decided us to read two kinds of book.One,must read Christ centered  book.Second,a book about Christmas around the world,historical – cultural overview and some traditional Christmas stories,not on everyday basis like the first kind but as and when basis.I didn’t wrap the books.Why?Now the moment of truth,i  don’t enjoy ‘wrapping’ gifts/boxes.I am  impatient and sloppy that way.
So i stumbled upon Ethiopia.Did you know that Ethiopia is one of two African countries which has never been colonized ?I found out some interesting facts about Christmas in Ethiopia.
Doro Wot |

Doro Wot |

  • Ethiopian orthodox Christians follow Julian Calendar.So they celebrate Christmas on Jan 7th and not on Dec 25th like we do.
  • Christmas is called ‘Ganna’ ,marking the birth of Christ,called ‘Leddat’.It is traditional for men to wear white ‘Shamma’ on Christmas.As they enter the church,they are given candle.
  • Ethiopians fast on Christmas Eve and refrain from eating meat,dairy etc.
  • Legend has it that the wise men traveled through Ethiopia,bringing gift to baby Jesus.
  • Gift giving on Christmas is not the part of the Ethiopian Christmas tradition.
When i found out about the most popular Ethiopian Christmas meal,“Doro Wot”,It  sounded all too familiar to Indian cuisine with the exception of Injera.Ethiopians eat spicey stew made out of chicken (Doro Wat) or other meat,scooped out with spongy Injera bread,no spoon and fork needed and homemade wine.Yes,that sounds very hardcore Indian to me with the exception of wine.
Doro Wot |

Doro Wot |

Ethiopian cooking is hinged on the spicy concoction of  clarified butter  called “Nit’ir Qibe“.Clarified butter or Ghee  as i have known is something,i am all too familiar with growing up.And yes,just a touch of  simple “ghee” is sure to lift any food.I happen to have Ghee in my fridge,so i didn’t take the trouble of clarifying my butter using unsalted block of butter,we get here in grocery store.I adapted  the recipe from here.
  • Omitted the wine and used just plain water,didn’t had stock.
  • To keep the heat tamed,i did not add cayenne pepper at all.Paprika,white peppercorn in Berbere made up the balance for us. 
  • I added tomatoes to it,just so it has familiar texture to it.Traditionally Doro wat is cooked slowly with NO tomatoes and  in lots of onion and is VERY SPICY.
 I didn’t make “Injera” obviously ,so on the first day we had it with Indian Paratha.For next day leftover,i prepared Jollof rice.We liked it better with rice !
We talked about what we know about Christmas in Ethiopia and prayed for the people before we cleaned our plate with additional servings 🙂
Doro Wot |

Doro Wot |

Doro Wat


  1. 2 chicken breast cut in cubes
  2. 1 lb Chicken Thighs cut in pieces
  3. 1 lemon
  4. 3 medium size onion chopped
  5. 2 garlic cloves crushed
  6. 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  7. 2 Tablespoon Nit'r Qibe
  8. 2 Tablespoons Berbere
  9. 2 tomatos pureed/chopped(optional)
  10. 4 hardboiled eggs(1/person)
  11. Salt to taste
  12. water


  1. Marinade the chicken for at least 1 hour in salt and 1 lemon juice
  2. In a pan,add Nit'r Qibe.
  3. Add onion and garlic to it.Saute it until brown and well caramelized.
  4. Add chicken pieces.
  5. Add Berbere spice mix.
  6. Stir it well.
  7. Add tomatos.Add water,if needed.
  8. Simmer it down and let it cook,until it is done.
  9. Add hardboiled eggs,you can poke the eggs,so the juices goes in.
  10. Enjoy with chapati/rice/paratha/tortilla.

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