When I take people out for Ethiopian food for the first time, this chicken stew, called doro wett (also spelled as doro we’t, doro wat, and doro wet), is a great introduction. It’s the first Ethiopian dish I ever had, and I immediately liked the tender meat, the spicy eggs, and the flavorful sauce laced with berbere and ginger. It’s a great dish to make for people who haven’t eaten African food before because it’s easy to understand and like.

Don’t be alarmed when the sauce doesn’t bind together and thicken like a traditional European-style sauce–it should in fact be liquidy and broken to soak into the injera it is served on.


Makes 6 servings

2 medium red onions, diced
¼ cup Spiced Butter or 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, divided
¼ teaspoon ground cardamom, preferably freshly ground
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 cloves
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 ½-inch piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon Berbere or chili powder
2 ½ cups chicken stock, divided
One 4- to 5-pound chicken, cut into 10 pieces, wings reserved for another use
¼ cup dry red wine
Juice of 1 lime
2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled


Combine the onions, a pinch of salt, and half of the spiced butter in a Dutch oven or other large deep pot over low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden, about 15 minutes. Add the remaining butter, the cardamom, black pepper, cloves, garlic, ginger, and berbere and cook until the onions soften and take on the color of the spices, about 10 minutes.

Add 2 cups of the chicken stock and the chicken legs and thighs, bring to a simmer, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the remaining ½ cup chicken stock and the wine, bringing back to a simmer, and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the chicken breasts and simmer for 20 minutes.

Gently stir in the lime juice and eggs and simmer for another 5 minutes. The sauce will be loose and soupy. Season with salt to taste.

Recipe provided courtesy of The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa by Marcus Samuelsson and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.