This quick Ethiopian Chickpea Stew made its first appearance when a friend hosted an Ethiopian potluck a few months ago, but it’s so good that it’s on regular rotation in our little kitchen. Using some basic pantry staples and a nice blend of spices, this dish comes together easily in just about a half hour.
I like this stew served with brown rice, but you could make it more authentic by serving with traditional fermented Ethiopian flatbread called injera which is made from teff flour. A regular wheat tortilla would be good too! And if you really want to go all out for your own Ethiopian meal, you could make tej (homemade honey wine), and work on your own injera bread and Ethiopian collard greens (Ye’abesha Gomen) too!
A note about spices: most Ethiopian recipes call for a spice blend known as berbere, which features chili, coriander, fenugreek and more. This recipe uses a simple mix of fairly common spices for a close approximation. If you have the berbere blend skip the spices listed and use 1 tablespoon of the berbere instead. Taste, and adjust seasoning as needed, as different brands have different levels of heat!
Ethiopian Chickpea Stew
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 cup thinly sliced onion
2 Tablespoons freshly grated ginger
2 Tablespoons freshly grated turmeric (optional)
2 cups diced carrots and/or turnips
3 cups cooked chickpeas
2 teaspoons ground coriander
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon clove, cardamom and cayenne
½ teaspoon of salt (more as needed)
1 (15-ounce) can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
½ cup coconut milk
4-6 Tablespoons water
2 Tablespoons natural peanut butter
1 Tablespoon honey
- In a large skillet (cast iron is ideal here) heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add onion and cook until soft and browned, about 10 minutes. Stir in ginger, turmeric and carrots/turnips. Cook for five minutes more to slightly cook carrots.
- Add chickpeas and spices. Toss together to coat. Add tomatoes and cook for 10 minutes; stew will thicken slightly as tomato juice evaporates. Add in coconut milk and a few tablespoons of water to keep mixture just slightly creamy (add more as needed).
- Stir in peanut butter and honey until smooth and blended. Taste and adjust seasonings and peanut butter as needed.
- Remove from heat and serve while warm. I like to stir in some chopped greens just before serving. Makes 4-6 servings.