Archive | December, 2013

The Mobile Store, or souk bederete.

Amharic is a great language methinks. Here is a word to remember: souk bederete. The direct translation of these words are “store on my chest” and refers to the people in Ethiopia who walk around trying to sell you chewing gum, fried dough or mobile cards more recently. A better way to think of it the souk bederete is as a mobile store.

Souk Chillin'

The art of shop keeping.

Well, these days, there are phone apps that allow you to process payments for goods you may sell on the road…the more things change, the more they are just the same right?


One time, I met this person who asked why one would not name their child teff. It would make a great name wouldn’t it?

Teff. Aaaah teff.

This incredible little grain is big and powerful in nutrient content. It happens to also be a gluten free grain and has taken on a big role in gluten free cuisine in the new world. For this Ethiopian and countless other folks, teff is just home. On a recent visit to Ethiopia, a woman said to us that if she missed a day of eating her enjera, she would feel like something was wrong. We understood what she meant. We, in the diaspora, feel forlorn in our separation from it.

In the countryside, fields of teff move to the whims of the wind. The DNA knows those motions oh so well.

Teff, we love it.