Shiro Wot (Chickpea Stew)

By / Food / February 1st, 2023 / 2

Recipe by Luladey Moges from Enebla: Recipes from an Ethiopian Kitchen, text copyright © 2022 by Luladey Moges. Reprinted with permission of TouchWood Editions. 

Serves 4–6


  • 1 cup shiro flour
  • 4 cups water, divided
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 2 teaspoons grated ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 tablespoon berbere
  • Salt and pepper


If there’s a dish that made me fall in love with food, this is it. In Ethiopia, it’s a staple. Everyone makes it, but no one makes it the way my grandmother did when I was a kid. She had a magical touch that lifted her version above everyone else’s . . . When I think of her shiro wot, the years fall away, my mouth starts watering, and I’m back in Addis Ababa, watching her lovingly stir her pot.

Place the shiro flour in a medium bowl, add 3 cups of the water, and mix well. Stir until it is lump-free and then set aside.

Place the onions and oil in a medium pot and cook over medium heat until they are translucent and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in the ginger and garlic and cook until just beginning to soften, about 4 minutes. Stir in the berbere, making sure the powder does not clump. Add the remaining 1 cup of water and bring to a boil.

Add the shiro mixture to the boiling water and stir. Turn down the heat to low, add salt and pepper to taste, and stir. Cover the pot and let the wot cook, stirring occasionally and adding about 1 tablespoon of water at a time, but no more than ½ cup (if required), until the liquid is reduced by about half and the sauce is moderately thick, 20–25 minutes.

Serve hot with injera or your favorite whole grain bread.

About Luladey Moges: 

Born in Addis Ababa, Luladey “Lula” Moges moved to the United States with her family at the age of 12 and learned the art of Ethiopian cuisine from her grandmother, mother, and aunts. Her busy career in hospitality was initially an obstacle to home-cooking—as many recipes require several hours to develop a full-bodied flavour—so she has spent years developing real-world recipes that deliver authentic, mom-approved fare in an hour or less. Lula lives in Los Angeles. Follow Lula on Instagram at @lulamoges


Looking at the small things that make life great and the people who create them.

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