Artoklasia Bread and a snack break at Little Africa Ethiopian Cuisine

I love my job. Earlier this week I got to spend half the day in our St. Euphrosynos (evFRO-see-nos) kitchen with Fr. R baking Artoclasia bread for the Dormition.

This is my favorite stand mixer. Watch how much stuff it can hold, with room to spare:

10 lbs all purpose flour
2 sticks margarine, room temperature
3 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups orange juice, extra pulp, room temperature
2 cups Crisco oil
2 tsp salt
2 tsp masticha (we used the syrup-type stuff in a jar)
2 Tbsp anise seed
6 packets of yeast or 12 tsp of yeast (or 4 Tbsp of yeast)
5 cups of water at 130 degrees Fahrenheit

We made it a little differently than the written recipe. Basically, we just put everything in the bowl of the stand mixer, and then…

We mixed it.

We mixed it until it was shiny, smooth and elastic. Approximately 10-15 minutes.

Then we turned it out into a very large bowl,

and marked it with a J : )

We covered the bowl with plastic wrap and stuck it in a warm place to rise while we went out to lunch at my favorite restaurant.

A combo platter at Little Africa. Clockwise from the bottom: lentils, alicha, shiro, soy curry and split peas. In the center going clockwise are beets, collard greens & tomato salad.

The best part is eating with your hands using the injera bread.

Injera is made with teff flour which gives it a kind of a sour flavor. All the air bubbles make it kind of look like a pancake, but it’s more dense and slightly sticky. We ate it all.

Back in the kitchen, we found the dough doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 325, perhaps lower if using a convection oven. The instructions say 295 “if using a school oven.” So if you’re a lunch lady, turn it down.

I love punching the dough, I don’t know why. But you know how it usually kind of deflates? This one didn’t.

It just looked like the Pillsbury Doughboy’s belly button.

Fr. R made 1 lb balls

then I cut them in half and we rolled them out…

and cut out a perfect circle using an old coffee tin.

See?

Rub a little water on the bottom round, and place the other on top. It’s probably easier to do this right on your baking sheet.

This is a seal from Fr. R’s collection. I like the little skull that represents Adam.

Flour the seal really well. You have to press VERY hard – press and press and press!! And then press some more. Afterwards, gently pull up on the seal, wiggling it a little.

This is a pretty good seal.

We use a wooden skewer to poke a few holes in the bread, to keep it from getting bubbles and ruining the seal.

Here’s our first loaf, on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. If you do the loaf on the counter or something and have to move it, the loaf might get all scrunched up.

We kept the loaves covered with plastic wrap until we filled the whole baking sheet.

Here are our loaves baking at various stages. Bake until golden brown, about 45 minutes.

The finished loaves.

I rubbed a little flour over the seal so it would show better.

We took some of the scraps and made random shapes for ourselves.

So, normally you would pour wine over the bread and sprinkle it with powdered sugar…

We didn’t do all that for our snack, but we did want to try it with the wine. We used the cheapest bottle around.

but we went all out on the styrofoam cups!

Tear. Dip. Eat. Any questions?

0 thoughts on “Artoklasia Bread and a snack break at Little Africa Ethiopian Cuisine

  1. WOW this is amazing, was so much fun to read! That dish looks soooo good! Yummm… i enjoyed reading and looking. 🙂
    S/N: time for bed, i almost didnt read because i REALLY have to go to sleep, but I was intrigued! lol
    Loved it. looks like u work at a fun and delicious place…

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