Have you ever tried Ethiopian food?
The first time I had it, I was a college student in Washington, D.C. My more worldly friends suggested we go out for Ethiopian, and I went along with it, even though I had no idea what Ethiopian food was. Heck, I didn’t even know where Ethiopia was…
Anyway, we went to Adams-Morgan and one of my friends ordered expertly from the menu. Of course, I was baffled by the food the waiter brought, and even more baffled by how to eat it. I had never eaten such messy stuff without silverware before. I watched and learned, and then never ate Ethiopian again until I met my husband.
To my unrefined tastes, eating Ethiopian food was like sopping up baby food with a sour sponge, and then eating it. I much preferred French fries.
My husband loves food though, any kind of food, and so we inevitably went out for Ethiopian food in Atlanta, Georgia.
I continued to be unimpressed with the cuisine. The injera (aka sour sponge bread) was just too sour. All the pureed thingies were really sour too. I just didn’t like it.
But when we got to Kenya, we were told that one of the best restaurants in Nairobi is Ethiopian.
I was wary, but we went to Habesha to try it out. (Dear Husband, please note that I am very accommodating of your food interests. You can bring me French fries to reciprocate.)
Turns out, Habesha was AWESOME!
I can’t get enough! We go there several times a month now because it’s so delicious! It’s even better than the Ethiopian food we had in Ethiopia! Look at all my exclamation points!!
I think there are two reasons for my change of heart. First, thanks to the kind tutelage of an acquaintance, I now know what to order. We get: zilzil tibs (delicious pieces of fried beef), shiro (an AMAZING paste made from powdered chick peas and butter), and mixed vegetables. Second, the injera is different here, it’s lighter in taste and color and not so sour. I can eat it without wincing.
So, armed with my new knowledge and my positive experience, I’m willing to try Ethiopian food again in the U.S. I just hope it can live up to Habesha.