Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Little Ethiopia

Before I left Los Angeles, I knew I needed to cross off as many places as possible on my list of places to eat. Ethiopian was definitely at the top of my list, as it seemed so silly not to, especially when Little Ethiopia was only a 10 minute drive from me. Now, I have to admit that I originally imagined (and hoped) that Ethiopian cuisine would be very similar to that of spicy Indian curries. However, I was surprised to find that the food, while obviously influenced by Indian flavors, had a savory taste of its own.



I was lucky enough to be joined by a friend who grew up with Ethiopian dishes and could order for me, as the menu's plentiful choices were slightly daunting to a newcomer, such as myself. I was instructed to use the staple Injera bread, in lieu of utensils, to scoop up as much as my mouth could handle. I tried a number of different items, and while I actually wasn't too keen on the Injera, which was a little too sour for my liking, I was generally impressed by the very homey and traditional vibe of the restaurant and food. The generous servings and the rich cultural atmosphere that oozed out of the walls made the new experience all the more worthwhile. If you're as unfamiliar with Ethiopian as I was, here are some shots of my journey through Little Ethiopia to get you started.
SAMBUSA
A fried dough appetizer filled with vegetables and spices
INJERA
A flat, sourdough pancake made of an indigenous grain called t'ef
Everything is served on top of Injera.
DORO WOT
Chicken stewed in pepper sauce with an assortment of spices (my favorite item from that day)
KITFFO
Finely chopped, lean beef with spiced butter and mitmita (hot spiced chilies)

Traditional Ethiopia Honey Wine
Photos by: Chandamheer 

Messob is located in Little Ethiopia at 1041 South Fairfax Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90019

Even though I wasn't as successful as hoped to be in completing my Los Angeles food bucket list (I think I might have been a little too ambitious when I jotted down scores and scores of restaurants), I'm glad that I at least managed to get in some decent dine time. I'm hoping to make up for it by trying out the best of the best around the US. I've already started yelping like a mad woman and scribbling my top picks for places to try on my cross country adventure in my precious Moleskine. I'm channeling my inner Bruce Chatwin, can't you tell? Won't you help out your fellow blogger by recommending your top picks? Let me know what I should try next below, and remember, the sky is the limit -- I discriminate against no food group!


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40 comments

  1. Oh my gosh I LOVE Ethiopian. We used to go all the time when I was in college and there was the best little place right down the street. I cant believe you didn't really like the injera though - that is my fave!

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  2. Yummy!!! everything looks amazing... the food and the place.
    I am from Argentina but I live in Andorra. And I will be going to Madrid's Fashion night out but it's my first time there I usually go to Barcelona instead.
    Thanks for passing by.
    Vicky

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  3. These look like they might be too spicy for me, and that's saying alot since Im cajun! haha, But the Kitffo looks tasty!


    clarkmurdock.blogspot.com

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  4. Cool blog! See me! Surely you will find something that interests you.
    http://sarafiorillo.blogspot.com/

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  5. never thought of trying ethiopian food, but i'm definitely going to try now!

    http://www.benchesandchandeliers.com

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  6. It sounds really really insteresting :D I love new things, i've never tryed this tipe of cooking :D

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  7. Oh this look yum! I visited an ethiopian restaurant once, and I guess like you I was also expecting something spicy. I wasn't too big a fan of the food itself, but the atmosphere compensated for it!

    stylebouquet.blogspot.com

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  8. i live in LA so i am def going to check that place out!! good post!

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  9. love love love MK&A as if you met them!
    and this food looks so yummy!


    thankyou for the comment on my blog :)
    XOXO, BECCA
    www.fashion-train.co.uk

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  10. Hey, thanks for stopping through. I just wanted to add (to my comment on the previous post) that Le Bistro Montage is a Cajun restaurant. Spicy, but yummy. They even have stuff like frog legs and alligator on the menu. So if you want eclectic and different, this is the place.

    Enjoy your road trip!

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  11. fabulous thanks for sharing xxx

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  12. That food is looking very delicious. :)SarahD

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  13. Great post!
    Looks very tasy...i should find a Ethiopian restaurant here in Stockholm and give it a try!
    xoxo

    http://madlooks.blogspot.com

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  14. Great post!
    Looks very tasy...i should find a Ethiopian restaurant here in Stockholm and give it a try!
    xoxo

    http://madlooks.blogspot.com

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  15. I love Ethiopian food!!! The Sambusa looks perfect xx

    http://topcoatfashionblog.blogspot.com/

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  16. all look so delicious! I love ethnical food! :)
    cute blog!

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  17. last week i just went out dinner at had the same food, was so good!!

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  18. that's great!
    I love try food from other countries it's funny, and delicious!





    LA

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  19. the food looks so yummy~
    i want to try~
    xx
    vnikali
    www.vnikali.blogspot.com

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  20. oh my god, I'm starting to get really hungry because of these gorgeous pictures!

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  21. I'd really like to try Ethiopian someday - but not sure it is offered in my city...

    http://pagesixxx.blogspot.com

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  22. omg i just went to eat ethiopian two nights ago! its one of my favorite cuisines!

    im really in love with injera too its such a cool texture!

    stayfabulous,
    zarna
    http://zarnasrunway.blogspot.com

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  23. I've never tried ethiopian food. It looks yummy : )

    Come check out my fashion blog.
    www.Chanelcraves.com

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  24. WoW they look amazing and I am so thrilled to see Sambusa becoz in India we eat as similar appetizer caller samosa which looks very similar and is filled with veggies..
    Keep in touch!

    xx
    Sahi
    www.barelyvogue.com

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  25. Looks delicious! If you are ever in DC try the Ethiopian places all over the city. There's a huge population of Ethiopian immigrants and a fairly large selection of restaurants that came with. Delicious :)

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  26. you know I never have has Ethiopian. It looks really good though! Nice blog! xo

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  27. Wow look like so good...nice post:))...

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  28. Great photos! All of it looks delicious!

    xoxo

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  29. oh my gosh, i've passed by this restaurant but i've never eaten there! the food looks yummy! :D

    p.s. i am a new follower. hope you can check out my blog too. thanks!

    <3, Mimi
    http://whatmimiwrites.blogspot.com/

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  30. I am going to have to try Ethiopian food. Looks good.

    windowshop78.blogspot.com

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  31. oh god i was salivating throughout this post. it's informative and lively-- great one!

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  32. These photos are making me hungry. mmmm

    :)

    Sending some beauty blogging love ♥
    http://thepowerandbeauty.blogspot.com/

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  33. Hey you! Just saw your response on the IFB forum... Bruin pride! :)
    Wanted to stop in and say hello!

    I live right by Little Ethiopia and have been trying to convince my bf that we should try one of these spots.

    When you're back in LA sometime, it'd be cool to meet up!

    XXo,
    Neekoh

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