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Recipes Around the World International Vegetarian Union
Ethiopian Vegan Recipes
Contributed by Vegetarians and Vegans from around the world
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Mesir Wat (Ethiopian red lentil puree)


Servings: 4-6

  • 2 Onions chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic crushed
  • 2 t Gingerroot, peeled, minced
  • ¼ c Oil, butter or niter kibbeh
  • 1 t Turmeric
  • 2 T Paprika
  • ½ to 2 t Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 lb Red Lentils
  • 4 c Water or Stock
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Puree onion, garlic, and ginger in a food processor or blender.

Heat oil, butter or niter kibbeh in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan.

Add turmeric, paprika and cayenne pepper and stir rapidly to color oil and cook spices through, about 30 seconds.

Add onion puree and sauté on medium heat until excess moisture evaporates and onion loses its raw aroma, about 5-10 minutes. Do not burn.

Add lentils and water. Bring to a boil and simmer till lentils are cooked through and fall apart, about 30-40 minutes. Add water if necessary to keep from drying out.

Stir in salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Notes: Shiro Wat: use split green peas instead of lentils. Shiro wat is an

Ethiopian Jewish dish. Substitute yellow lentils if you like.