Ethiopian Asa Tibs & Berbere Spice Mix is a delicious fried fish preparation for any party. The ubiquitous Berbere Spice Mix of Ethiopia can also be used with anything from chicken to potatoes.
Food of the World is going to the East African nation of Ethiopia today. Ethiopian cuisine is a varied cuisine with Indian, African and Italian influences. Ethiopian Tibs are basically fried meats. If you’ve ever eaten at an Ethiopian restaurant, awaze tibs are usually one of the most common menu items which utilizes beef. When done with chicken, they are called doro tibs and the fish version is called asa tibs. Seasoned with berbere, the ubiquitous Ethiopian spice blend, this is one of the most common street food items in Ethiopia.
In good international markets, you can locate a berbere spice blend. I suggest Spice & Tease. You can order online here or visit one of their several New York City locations. I decided to go traditional and made my own version.
IN THE MAKING – HOW TO MAKE BERBERE SPICE MIX
IN THE MAKING – HOW TO MAKE ETHIOPIAN ASA TIBS
Serve with lime and an extra garnish of more berbere.
Ethiopian Asa Tibs & Berbere Spice Mix
- Berbere Spice Mix Ingredients
- 5 dried red chiles
- 1 allspice berry
- 6 green cardamom
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 cloves
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 3 tablespoon paprika
- 2 teaspoon salt
- Asa Tibs Ingredients:
- 2 pounds monkfish or your favorite white flesh fish
- 1 1/2 tablespoons berbere
- salt to taste
- oil for frying
- 1 thinly sliced onion
- 2 finely chopped garlic cloves
- 3 finely chopped small chiles
- juice of 1 lime
- First, let's make the berbere.
- In a dry skillet, roast chiles, allspice, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, fenugreek and peppercorns until they become fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Cool.
- Combine with the remaining ingredients in a coffee/spice grinder and grind to a powder.
- Sprinkle berbere over fish and leave for 1 hour to marinate.
- Heat enough oil in a large skillet for deep frying. Add fish pieces and fry until golden on all sides and cooked through. Remove to a paper towel lined plate to absorb excess oil. Sprinkle with a little salt.
- Add onions and cook until golden and caramelized, about 10 minutes. Most of the oil will have evaporated. Add garlic and chiles. Cook for 1 more minute.
- Return fish to the pan. Add lime juice and toss to combine.
- Serve with lime and an extra garnish of more berbere.
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