Ethiopian Lentils with Squidgy Bread

A delicious version of Misir Wat spicy Ethiopian lentils using Berbere spice mix. Served with a lovely gluten-free flatbread to scoop it up – so good!

Ethiopian lentils with squidgy bread

I love Ethiopian food, but it’s a relatively recent discovery for me. We first went to the wonderful and super friendly Blue Nile in Birmingham a couple of years ago and I fell in love immediately with the delicious, healthy veg pack feast served up.

We pretty much always have the same thing, which is Yetsom Beyaynetu, a huge Injera bread topped with multiple small veggie dishes around the outside, then a big pile of spicy lentils in the middle.

Then another plate of rolled up of the squishy fermented injera bread to dip and scoop up all the delicious dishes. The perfect sharing of food, a healthy and tasty plant based feast.

I’m still working on creating my injera bread but today I made a quick flatbread/pancake to accompany my spicy lentils and although it doesn’t compare, I think it’s a pretty good accompaniment and uses a combination of flours (including delicious teff which injera bread is made from). I used Free From Fairy self raising wholemeal flour which includes teff, buckwheat and sorghum—some of my favourite gluten-free flours and the result is pretty good!

I also created my version of Misir Wat spicy lentils, and they are so so good. I used Berbere spice to flavour the lentils–it’s usually a mix of chili peppers, garlic, ginger, basil, korarima, rue, ajwain, nigella, and fenugreek.

To accompany the spicy lentils but I made some roast squash, hummus and my favourite cabbage salad. But you can do any veggies you like or have leftover.

Mezze type meals are truly my favourite way of eating, lots of individual dishes which are good on their own and but even better eaten together.

Ethiopian lentils with squidgy bread

Ethiopian Lentils with Squidgy Bread

A delicious version of Misir Wat spicy Ethiopian lentils using Berbere spice mix. Served with a lovely gluten-free flatbread to scoop it up - so good!
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
2 servings
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For the spicy lentils

  • 2 onions chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp Berbere spice
  • 3 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 knob grated ginger
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 cups organic red lentils–rinsed well
  • 2 cups organic veg stock
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • Fresh coriander

For the bread

  • 1 cup free from flour–I used free from fairy self raising a mix of teff, buckwheat and sorghum
  • or a mix of buckwheat and gluten-free white flour
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp organic apple cider vinegar

Accompanying dishes

  • Hummus
  • Cabbage salad
  • Roast squash
  • Toasted seeds


To make the lentils

  • Add the oil to a large frying pan and heat to a medium heat then add in the onion, fry for approx 5 minutes until soft and browning. Add in the spices, garlic and ginger, stir for a few minutes.
  • Add in the tomato paste, lentils, veg stock & water. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Season well.

To make the bread

  • Put the flour and other dry ingredients in a bowl, make a well in the middle and add the olive oil.
  • Gradually pour in the water, mixing with a spoon or whisk, until you have a batter like consistency.
  • Heat a small/pancake pan until hot, brush with olive oil and pour in the batter. This should make a thick pancake.
  • Lower the heat slightly and allow the flatbread to firm up before turning and browning the other side.
  • Remove from the pan and top with all the delicious toppings.

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5 Responses

  1. Hi Niki, Could I mix gluten free flour, teff and buckwheat? After 4 days fermenting a strict teff batter, it all failed at the cooking phase ‍♀️

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