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Sunday, August 5, 2012

Messob in Little Ethiopia: Soak Up The Goods with Spongy Injera

I was never one to crave Ethiopian but having it for the first time in a long time made me realize that perhaps I had missed it more than I knew. We went to Messob in the heart of Little Ethiopia on Fairfax and got an assortment of mostly vegetarian dishes to eat the spongy injera bread with.

We got the Doro Wot, whole chicken pieces in a delightful sauce with a hard boiled egg and a sample of the veggie ones that included garlicky peas and onions, lentils in a red pepper sauce, steamed vegetables with spices and chopped up collard greens. My favorites were the chicken and peas. The massive tray came with a nondescript and unremarkable greens salad on a bed of injera.

I loved tearing pieces of the injera and grabbing different fillings for each bite. My only highly culturally insensitive complaint, if you will, is that I'm not the most adroit so just using my hands to try to break off a piece of the hard boiled egg with one hand using the injera piece as my only utensil was like an accident waiting to happen. I was fully prepared to have the chicken sauce splatter all over my dainty summer dress but thankfully, there were no injuries during the shooting of this post.
I could taste the distinctive flavor of peas and the lentils were good too. It felt particularly good as you know how lentils are good for you? The collar greens were just ok, probably my least favorite but it provided a variation in texture and color.

The steamed vegetables consisted of green cabbage and carrots, which didn't have too much flavor but again, they balanced out the other strongly flavored ones on the tray.
I'm not going to lie. I'm not going to list Ethiopian on top of my list of favorite cuisines just yet. But it was still a nice reminder of the wealth of restaurants and mini communities that LA has to offer. Maybe I'll bring my own knife to cut up the egg and chicken next time.

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