Papa Tofu by Kittee was at the top of my to-buy list for a long time, and when I spotted a copy at Herbivore in August I snapped it up. If you live under a rock and don’t know who Kittee is, she blogs at Cake Maker to the Stars, posts recipes at pakupaku.info, contributes to xgfx.org, makes really cute bags, and also recently put out another zine of all vegan Ethiopian food. Having tried a few of the Ethiopian recipes from Papa Tofu, the Ethiopian zine is now at the top of my to-buy list.
Papa Tofu is a super-duper fun and cute zine with four sections – Ethiopian, New Orleans/Southern, The “Other”, and Tooth Rotters. Recipes I’d like to try in the future include the Seitan Po’ Boys and Collard Greens, Soft Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pretzels, Chocolate Whoopie Pies and Pumpkin Cheezecake Squares. Basically, every recipe looks delicious.
Having never made Ethiopian food at home, I tried out a few recipes from that section.
This is Atar Allecha (split pea puree), Gomen (greens) and Ethiopian Salad.
The Ethiopian Salad recipe calls for Italian vinaigrette, which is pretty funny I think. I made a fat-free vinaigrette with red wine vinegar, mustard, water, stevia, xantham gum and dried herbs. I really liked the chunky nature of this salad, and the sliced jalapeno.
Ethiopian food is normally served over injera, a fermented flat bread made from teff flour. I don’t know of anywhere nearby to buy injera, nor did I want to make my own, so I made a quick chickpea crepe to fill the flatbread role. To start both of the recipes I needed to make Niter Kibbeh, or seasoned “butter”, by simmering Earth Balance with onion and spices. I used half the Niter Kibbeh called for in each dish to lower the fat content, but looking back I should have doubled the spices while preparing the butter in order to keep the same spicy oomph in the final product. Regardless, both of these recipes were delicious. The seasoned butter provides that interesting background flavor that gives Ethiopian food its distinctive taste. The split peas reminded me how much I love split peas (and made me ask why I don’t eat them more often), and I don’t need an excuse to eat collard greens. The Gomen recipe instructs you to remove the ribs and stems first and chop them, then add to the pot with the onion, which provided a nice texture contrast to the soft greens.