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Ethiopian vegetable wat

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  • Chef: Mandy
  • Serves: 6
  • Cost: 85p per person
  • Cuisine: Ethiopia

For Black History Month 2020 we have been cooking recipes inspired by African or Caribbean cuisine in our Healthy Living Kitchen.


Read more about our Black History Month events here.


The final dish we made was this Ethiopian vegetable wat. A wat is a dish a bit like a curry or stew from Ethiopia or Eritrea.


The recipe that we made is based on one that originally appeared in the World Food Cafe cookbook. We adapted their recipe to suit what we had available in the kitchen. You can do the same – this is a very flexible dish and you can use any combination of vegetables.


We served our vegetable wat with rice, Ethiopian lentil salad and a beetroot, carrot and corn salad.


NB: You will need a large saucepan with a lid to make this dish.




1 tbsp sunflower oil

1 white onion, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon berbere powder (available in Nour Cash and Carry in Brixton)

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

3 cardamon pods, seeds removed and ground using a spice grinder or pestle and mortar

2 cloves, ground using a spice grinder or pestle and mortar

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 pepper, chopped

1 courgette or summer squash, chopped

1 small cauliflower, broken into florets

3 potatoes, chopped

1/2 celeriac, peeled and chopped (or other root vegetable)

200g green beans, chopped

1 tin tomatoes

250ml vegetable stock

Salt and pepper, to taste

Handful coriander leaves, chopped




  1. Heat the sunflower oil in a large saucepan.
  2. Add the chopped onions and carrots. Stir well then reduce the heat to low, cover the saucepan with a lid and cook for around 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft.
  3. Remove the lid, turn the heat to medium and add the garlic. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes until the garlic is starting to soften.
  4. Add all the spices and stir well. Cook for a further 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add all the prepared vegetables and stir well. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring often.
  6. Add the tinned tomatoes and the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer until the vegetables are soft. Add more stock or hot water if you need to.
  7. Season to taste with salt and pepper and finally stir through the chopped coriander leaves.