Hallelujah: You Can Now Get Ethiopian Food in South Florida
All photos by Hannah Sentenac
South Florida is a barren wasteland for Ethiopian eats. Excuse the bitter tone, but it's been a long four years since the area's last East African restaurant closed. In the meantime, anyone craving injera has been forced to trek three hours to Orlando.
Owner Derek Ford invited us to try their savory spread.
Ford and his wife, Lewam, disappointed in the area's lack of Ethiopian options, decided to fill the need. Lewam hails from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and used to work at Sheba (Miami's only Ethiopian eatery that closed several years back).
Her cooking is outstanding; comparable to anything you'll find at the best Ethiopian restaurants in NYC and San Francisco. She served up a vegan-friendly combo: injera -- an Ethiopian sourdough flatbread -- topped with a hearty portion of stewed cabbage, red lentils, and green lentils.
The red lentils were spicy and aromatic; the green mild and flavorful; the cabbage tender and plump. The injera was pleasantly sour and spongy, just as it should be.
Other menu options include collard greens with garlic and green pepper ($7), chick pea stew (Yemitin Shiro Wat) with red pepper sauce ($7) and split-pea stew (Yeater Alicha) with garlic and onions ($7). Plus Doro Wat (chicken stew) for the omnivores.
They're looking for a restaurant space, but in the meantime, farmer's market shoppers can pop in for a bite. Their booth is strategically located next to a few wooden tables, so there's easy-access seating.
Note: Ethiopian food is on the messier side (you eat it with your hands, after all), so maybe bring along extra napkins or grab it to go so you can slobber all over yourself in the privacy of your own home.
They're on site Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Yellow Green Farmer's Market. Find them in the last aisle, on the left (if you're coming in the main entrance).