April 07, 2010

Injera - Ethiopian Bliss

Injera is normally made out of Teff, a grain from Ethiopia. I don't have Teff. I've looked high and low and come up short every time. So I ventured to make my own. Reasoning it was similar to a pancake, and learning from Wikipedia that it was fermented with yeast, I mixed up a pancake batter and let it ferment overnight on the counter.

Now I don't know if any wild yeast found their way into my pancake mix, and I don't know if it was because the batter seemed thicker than normal pancake batter, and I don't know if it was because I really really wanted it to turn out well, but it did! The faux-, mock-, whatever-you-want-to-call-it injera was light and spongy. I mean it wasn't 100% light like injera at an Ethipoian restaurant, though it really was as spongy, I swear.

I should have taken a picture. Blast! I just couldn't stop myself from cooking up the other Ethiopian dishes: Ayib Be Gomen and a kind of Wat. It all turned out really well, and the injera soaked up the Wat beautifully.

Read on for my recipe for Injera. Enjoy!

*Aunt Jemima Complete Pancake Mix


Prepare mix as directed on the Aunt Jemima Pancake Mix box. I used the complete mix which requires only adding water, so the proportions were 1/4 cup water for 1/3 cup pancake mix.

Stir more thoroughly than you would normal pancake mix so that the flour can soak up more of the liquid.

Let sit for 24 hours or at least overnight on the counter with something covering it - like cheesecloth.

If the mix seems thick when you're ready to use it (and it should) add some water to thin it out as much as you'd like. Remember: you're not going to flip the injera, so thinner will cook faster.

Heat a pan/skillet over medium-high heat. It's hot enough when drops of water sizzle when splashed on it. Pour in the batter is whatever amount you'd like, but do not fill the entire pan.

Put or place a lid on top of the pan to cover the injera, heating it from both sides, and turn the heat down to medium.

The injera is done when the batter is not liquid anymore. You'll notice the characteristic bubbles that injera has immediately.

Roll or flip out with a spatula. Enjoy with awesome Ethiopian dishes like Ayib Be Gomen and Doro Wat. MMM!!
* Note: 1/3 cup mix (before adding water) will make approximately one 10-12 inch injera.


  1. In my Health Promotions class, we have group presentations on the different health care systems in different countries, and one of them did Ethiopia. The group brought in injera, and I tried my very first injera that day. I didn't really like it, actually. It was sOUR! But I'll bet it would have been so much better eaten together with lentils or curry or something.

  2. It's true that traditional injera made from teff flour is slightly sour. This version here though is not sour at all because it hasn't had the usual necessity of prolonged fermentation. Give it a try and let me know what you think. And yes, it's amazing with curries!