Injera Chips – Oil Free

Well, what do you do in the middle of Lent when you have leftover injera bread from the Ethiopian takeout you got over the weekend? Usually I use it to make injera chips or cook it down into an injera porridge, but those require the use of oil. Or do they??

I made a basic tahini sauce – 2 heaping Tbsp tahini, a little lemon, salt, and garlic, and thinned with water until it was just thin enough to “paint” with it. Then I added berbere and a little turmeric and nutritional yeast (all but tahini is to taste).

Place the injera on a baking dish, hole-y side up, and brush, brush, brush with tahini sauce. Try to fill in as many of those little cute little holes as you can.

Bake at 275, until the injera is nice and crispy. Keep an eye on the edges – they may brown more rapidly. If that happens, I usually just quickly take the pan out and break off the browned areas, and pop the rest back in the oven.

This is a great way to spice up, and fatten up, and boring ol’ salad. Of course, the chips are also great on their own.

If you get injera made with 100% teff flour, these are also gluten free!

Pizza Week 2015, Day 4: Injera Pizza with Berbere

Pizza Week is such a happy time! A party last night, and an Ethiopian-inspired pizza tonight. The only thing that could make this week better…

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Getting a free lunch from Gursha earlier this week! The guy really loaded up the boxes, and as usual…

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there was a TON of leftover injera. And I love finding new ways to use leftover injera.

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I also like finding new ways to use the takeout box – Wilson kept me company while I was alone in the office. Anyway.
Preheat your oven to 425.

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I really can’t give you any measurements ’cause it depends on how much injera you have leftover. That’s why we call this intuitive cooking, if you didn’t notice at the top of the blog there. Anyway (again), chop up the injera. Meanwhile,

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we’re gonna need some margarine, and some Daiya mozzarella shreds. It’s pretty similar to how we start out making injera porridge.

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Melt it down – you may need to stir it up a little.

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Add the chopped injera,

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stir to coat. Stir and stir and stir. It might clump a little, just keep stirring!

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Season to taste with berbere, turmeric, garlic powder, onion powder, maybe a little salt and nutritional yeast.

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STIR. By this time the bread will be starting to soften and shrink. Add water a little at a time and KEEP STIRRING.

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The injera will start to break down and become smooth – it doesn’t have to be perfectly smooth, stop adding water when it starts to smooth out. How many more times will I say smooth??

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Turn the injera mixture out onto a pizza pan covered with parchment paper. You might be safe just greasing the pan, but I was afraid the melted cheese might stick.

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Press it out with your fingers. In my family it’s really cool if you can touch burning hot food with your bare hands, so that’s what I did. You can let it cool a little if ya want to, though.

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Bake the crust at 425 until it gets crispy around the edges.

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Meanwhile, saute onions in margarine and season with berbere and a little salt.

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The other night I wasted some of this Daiya provolone on that crock pot pizza, so I had to redeem myself tonight!

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There’s no sauce on this pizza, just add a layer of Daiya provolone to start.

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Top with baby spinach and the sauteed onions,

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more Daiya shreds (and I tore up the last piece of the provolone and threw that on, too),

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and tomoato. Then drizzle with a little olive oil. I also sprinkled a little berbere on top.
Bake at 425 until the cheese is nice and melty and beginning to brown.

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The edges of the crust will also brown up nicely and get extra crispy. It really only gets that way around the edges, but the inner part of the crust does firm up.

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The Daiya slices melt faster than the shreds,

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but I think they also help the shreds melt – I noticed when I bake the shreds with a liquid (like drizzled oil, hot sauce, and in this case the melty slices) they melt better.

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And I like combining the two because the shreds add the stretchy, chewiness the slices are lacking. They have two distinct flavors that are great together.

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BUT THAT CRUST, THO. The injera with the spices, cheese, veggies………

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Yes. Yes, I love this pizza. I love the onions and spinach. The big chunks of tomatoes with the sourness of injera crust remind me of the tomato salad at Little Africa. I know it’s pretty fattening, but we’re basically in the middle of Fat Week (can you believe some people only have Fat Tuesday??). I can usually put away a whole vegan pizza easy, but the injera crust is very filling. I have leftovers for lunch tomorrow.
Oh, and I started eating the pizza with a fork and knife because I could tell the inner crust was way softer than the edges, but I actually was able to pick the slices up like regular ol’ pizza.

I think this probably my favorite use so far for leftover injera. What’s yours?

OH, I almost forgot – traditional injera is made with 100% teff flour and is gluten free! Sometimes it’s Americanized with other flours to kill the unique sour taste, so watch out for that.

Kale & Kidney Bean Injera Porridge (fir-fir)

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Okay, I’m way behind on posting recipes because I’ve been working on the new recipe index!!! I still have quite a ways to go, but I think it’s probably not as exciting for all of you as it is for me. So. Food. I love making fir-fir, which is basically an injera porridge.

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Just like Little Africa, Gursha gives a ton of extra injera. I know some people like to take a huge piece of bread and a tiny scoop of the food, but not me. I do the opposite, and I always have bread left over.

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So this time I started by cooking a ton of onions and fresh garlic in about 1/4 C margarine. Traditionally you’d use clarified butter, but then it wouldn’t be vegan, ya know? So I use Smart Balance. When the onions begin to soften, add kidney beans. My were from a can this time – drain, rinse & drain before adding.

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Season with berbere spice blend, turmeric for a lovely neon yellow color, and nutritional yeast is optional (to taste). I also added a touch of black pepper. It’s already going to be a little salty because of the margarine, so you probably won’t need any extra. Stir it all up. Meanwhile…

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I cut the hard center out of a few giant leaves of kale (I believe this is the “premier” variety) and tore them up into small pieces.

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By now the onions are soft and clear, and the beans have had a chance to soak up all the flavor.

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Add the kale. If there’s too much to stir at first, cover and let it cook a few minutes until it shrinks.

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Stir it in…

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Cut the injera into very small pieces, add to the pot.

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Stir until the bread is coated with the margarine and spices. Let it cook for another 5 minutes or so. After that, I like to turn the heat up and brown it a little, stirring every so often, but it’s not necessary. Just a texture preference 🙂

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You won’t need anything but a beverage to go with this, it’s quite filling on its own.

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You get the slightly sour taste of the injera with the smooth taste of the kidney beans, the fresh flavor of kale, and the warm spiciness of the berbere. Oh. Plus the onions and garlic…it’s so wonderful.
It’s also gluten free if your injera is made the traditional way, using only teff flour. How do you use up leftover injera?

Injera Porridge (fir-fir) with Spinach

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So I had some injera leftover from my takeout a while back, and I threw it in the freezer to save for later. Here’s what I did with it…

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Green onions,

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I only had a few, so I added some white onion. And of course, fresh garlic.

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Saute in margarine until soft.

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Seasoned with a berbere blend, cumin and turmeric. I also added nutritional yeast, optional.

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Tear or cut up the thawed bread, and add it to your pan.

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Add some spinach. I used baby spinach that was already washed and ready to use.

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Stir. It will start to cook down almost immediately, so you can keep adding more if you’d like.

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Begin adding water 1 tablespoon at a time, and keep stirring. The injera will get soft and porridge-like. And then become, ya know, porridge.

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I had these chips. You may remember them from the time I used them to make delicious pancakes.

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Same concept. Crunch them up and add them to the porridge.

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Unless you find one like this, with a super thick coating of seasonings. Isn’t that your favorite? It’s mine. I saved it and gave myself a little treat.

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Anyway. Stir in the rest of the chips.

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Best eaten right away, while the chips are still crunchy.

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Srsly. Quit taking pictures and EAT, or the chips will get soggy! …that’s what happened to me, but they still tasted good. Still, I’d prefer the crunch.

injera #7: cinnamon & sugar chips

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For my 2nd quick post of the day, yet another use for leftover injera bread. I just snapped one picture before it went in the oven, but you can look at my other recipe for injera chips if you want to see the process.

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For this sweet version, I simply melted margarine, brushed it on the hole-y side of the bread, sprinkled the bread with cinnamon and sugar and popped it in the oven at 275 for close to an hour. You may want to flip it halfway through to get it crisp on both sides.

Wondering what else I can do with this delicious bread….

Here’s what else I’ve done with injera so far:

Firfir Salad
Injera Chips
Stuffed Mushroom Caps
DELICIOUS Injera Porridge
Injera Bread Pudding
Za’atar & Tahini Sandwich Roll

Leftover Injera #4: Bread Pudding

A while ago, I posted a few uses for leftover injera bread – salad, porridge, chips & stuffing for mushroom caps. Well, I bought some more injera last week and (after eating two or three bowls of the porridge) came up with a couple new uses! The first is an incredibly easy vegan bread pudding.

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Get some margarine melting in a pan. I think I used 2 to 3 tablespoons.

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Add chopped injera and stir to coat. This is about 1 1/2 – 2 cups. I let mine brown just a little.

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Begin adding sweet Marsala by the tablespoonful…

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stirring after each spoonful…

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I ended up adding 5 Tbsps plus a few tablespoons of water because I didn’t want the Marsala to be overpowering, but…

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I wanted the bread to get nice and soft, and sticky.

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Next, add carob syrup to taste. I used 1 to 2 Tbsp.

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It made one very large serving. It may not look like much, but it’s SO filling!

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The texture of it is similar to the texture of the scalloped pineapple I made for Thanksgiving, and it even had a similar fruity taste. This is not only because of the sweet Marsala, but also because carob has fruity notes.

I will be posting another injera recipe in the near future. Until then, check out my previously posted injera uses:

Firfir Salad
Injera Chips
Stuffed Mushroom Caps
DELICIOUS Injera Porridge

Leftover Injera Bread, part two: Making Chips!

I thought this would be my final post about leftover injera (at least for this round), but it turns out this is 2 of 3! It’s kind exciting. I found a really cool blog that seems to be abandoned now, and on it was a recipe for Injera Chips. Preheat your oven to 275.

Start with vegetable or canola oil and spices: berbere, turmeric, garlic and cayenne. And maybe a little pinch of salt.

All these colors will look gorgeous on the bread.

Stir it up.

I had a nearly whole round of injera, a little bent and misshapen from being folded in the takeout box. I put it on a round pizza pan and brushed the “holey” side with the oil and spices.

Make sure you’re continually stirring the oil & spices or brushing the bottom of the bowl because the spices will settle. You don’t want all the spices on one part and nothing but oil on another.

The injera baked for about 45-60 minutes. I kind of lost track because towards the end I shifted the pan a few times, and I also flipped the bread over twice.

It got nice and crispy.

I broke the bread up into bite size pieces and refilled the takeout box. Somehow the sour flavor of the teff flour combined with the spices reminded me of something…I think it was Cheese Its! Actually, probably Cheese Nips because we were too poor to eat Cheese Its, we had to get the knock offs. Anyway, I don’t know if they really do taste like either one because it’s been so long since I’ve had them, I’ll have to ask my grandpa. They’re his favorite snack.

Now, if you happen to have any will power whatsoever and do not eat all of your chips in one sitting, you can look forward to the third and final recipe for leftover injera which will actually use these injera chips.

*If the suspense it just KILLING you…I used the chips in a filling for stuffed mushroom caps.

more leftover magic: transforming pesto, pot sticker dough & injera bread!

I had a very nice weekend, I hope you all did, too. Saturday night I stayed in, made a nice dinner and watched Purple Rain with my dog. I had that leftover dough from the pot stickers that I wanted to use up, and a little of the sun dried tomato pesto. So, I decided to make a pizza.

Here is my little ball of dough on a floured surface.

I rolled it out into a nice, er…shape. Whatever shape that may be.

Put it on my greased baking sheet. Poured a little olive oil on the dough and spread it around – I used my fingers!

Now for the pesto.

Spread the pesto around, add your toppings. I decided to keep it simple with mushrooms and onions. I drizzled a little olive oil on the onions so they’d bake through without getting burned.

I baked the pizza for about 12 minutes at 475 in the convection oven.

Notice the onions didn’t shrivel up or blacken. That is what usually happens when a non-veggie restaurant tries to make a vegan pizza. Now, the next picture doesn’t look quite so pretty, although it was delicious.

Friday after a VERY long day of work and helping out at the 2nd Best Sale, I treated myself to the All You Can Eat special at Little Africa. And I got it To Go! You might wonder, as the owner of the restaurant did, “How do you get All You Can Eat to go??” I told him just estimate how much I normally eat when I get the special, and put it in a box. Or two. All the scoops of this and that got kind of mashed down and the bread soaked up the juice and stuck in the food. Doesn’t matter, it was still great. But all those little scoops had nothing to do with the meal I ate Saturday night.

No, that was long gone, and all that was left was this massive mound of injera bread. I hate to waste it, so I looked online for a firfir recipe and found one for a firfir salad.

Just tear up some of the injera bread into little pieces and put it in a bowl with tomato and onion.

My dad bought me a set of these spice blends, lucky for me.

Add some berbere to vegetable or canola oil with fresh lemon juice and minced garlic, and salt. All seasonings are to taste.

You can add turmeric to give it a nice color. Pour it over your injera and veggies, and stir to coat.

Why bother slicing the pizza into little pieces when you know you’re going to eat the whole thing?

The flavors didn’t necessarily “go together,” but I don’t mind eating two completely different things together. And I was happy to find a use for my leftover injera, other than sharing it with the dog (although he was kind enough to sit through Purple Rain with me…). I still had some injera left, so you can expect another leftover injera recipe soon!