Ethiopian Cauliflower, Potatoes and Carrots (Wot)

 Ethiopian Cauliflower, Potatoes and Carrots
Wot is a magical gem of Ethiopian cuisine. Meaning stew, wot varies in texture from thin to thick, and also ranges from spicy hot to mild on the heat spectrum. The spicy sauce for wot, known as kulet, is generally made first and then followed by the addition of the main ingredients for the stew, and this is all simmered together until thickened and cooked throughout. The main features of the kulet are onions or shallots, oil and seasonings.

Red wot gets is color from the addition of berbere, a spice blend featuring red chili peppers and a variety of other spices. Wot can feature chicken, beef, lamb, or lentils, and vegetables. The one thing that is common to wot is that traditionally it is eaten with injera bread, a spongy fermented crêpe made from teff flour that you can easily purchase at Ethiopian restaurants or African grocers. The possibilities are endless here, and here I share yet another version of a wot that is filling and satisfying.
For this dish, I've featured two prized root vegetables along with cauliflower. Carrots add a lovely natural sweetness to this wot, and the potatoes and cauliflower provide a lovely canvas to showcase the layering of flavors. To balance out proteins, serve with red lentils in a spicy tomato sauce (ye'misser wot be'timatim) on injera bread for a most satisfying meal.
Ethiopian Cauliflower, Potatoes and Carrots (Wot)Ethiopian Cauliflower, Potatoes and Carrots (Wot)
Recipe by
Cuisine: Ethiopian
Published on June 3, 2024

A medley of vegetables cooked in a simple, warming, spicy and fragrant Ethiopian sauce

Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 35 minutes

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  • 1 small or medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, divided, + more as needed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced or crushed
  • 1-inch fresh ginger, grated or minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ajwain seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3 tablespoons berbere powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 medium potato, scrubbed and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 2 cups water or vegetable stock
  • 1 medium cauliflower (1 1/2 lbs or 675 g), cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 large carrot, scrubbed and cut into thin strips
  • Heat a large heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt. Cover and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until the onion begins to soften. Add the olive oil, stir, cover, and continue to cook for another 6 to 8 minutes, stirring often, until the onion begins to brown.

  • Stir in the tomato, garlic, ginger, ground coriander, turmeric, basil, fenugreek powder, cardamon, ajwain seeds, and cloves. Cover and cook, stirring often, for another 5 minutes, until the tomato is softened.

  • Stir in the berbere and paprika, add the potato, and stir well to coat. Cook for another few minutes. Add the water or stock, cauliflower, and carrot, stir well, cover, and cook for another 15 to 18 minutes, stirring often, until the vegetables are tender and the sauce has thickened.

  • Serve hot with injera (teff) breads.

Makes 6 servings
 Ethiopian Cauliflower, Potatoes and Carrots

Other Ethiopian dishes from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen:
Red Lentils in a Spicy Tomato Sauce (Ye'misser Wot Be'timatim)
Ethiopian-Style Red Lentil and Okra in a Spicy Tomato Sauce
Mixed Vegetables in a Basic Ethiopian Kulet Sauce
Ethiopian Lentil & Mustard Salad (Azefa)

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