Doro Wat (Ethiopian Chicken with Booda’s Berberé)
Serves 4- 6
Doro Wat is perhaps the best known food from Ethiopia and is often referred to as the Ethiopian national dish. It is traditionally very spicy, but you can adjust the amount of cayenne pepper to your liking.
2 Lbs. Chicken legs and thighs, skinless
Juice of 1 lemon
1 Tsp. Sea Salt
2 Medium Onions, chopped
3 Cloves Garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp. Ginger Root, peeled and chopped
1/4 Cup Oil or butter
2 Tbsp. Paprika
1/2 – 2 Tbsp. Cayenne
2 Tbsp. Booda’s Berberé
3/4 Cup Stock or Water
1/4 Cup Red wine (Optional – Substitute additional stock)
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper to taste
4 Hard-boiled eggs, peeled (optional)
Mix together the chicken pieces, lemon juice and salt and in a large, non-reactive bowl and set aside to marinate for about 30 minutes. While the chicken is marinating, puree the onions, garlic and ginger in a food processor or blender. Add water if necessary. Heat the oil, or butter in a large pot over medium flame. Add the paprika and stir in to color the oil and cook the spice through, about 1 minute. Do not burn. Stir in the Berberé and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add the onion-garlic-ginger puree and sauté until most of the moisture evaporates and the onion cooks down and loses its raw aroma, about 5-10 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to burn. Pour in the water or stock and wine, cayenne to taste and the chicken pieces. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Add water as necessary to maintain a sauce-like consistency. Add the whole hard boiled eggs and continue to cook for another 10-15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and very tender. Adjust seasoning and serve hot with rice.
Traditionally, the pureed onions are cooked first in a dry pan without any oil. The liquid evaporates and they take on a unique toasted flavor. If you try this method, ensure that your flame is adjusted so as to not burn the onions, and stir constantly. Then add the oil or butter , paprika, and the Berberé and proceed with the recipe.
Sik Sik Wat: Substitute 2 pounds of cubed stewing beef for the chicken. Proceed with the recipe.
Vegetable Wat: Substitute 2 pounds of small zucchini, halved and quartered. Proceed with the recipe, however only cook long enough for the zucchini to be cooked through.