Berbere - actually berbère - is the usual substitute for pepper in Ethiopian and Eritrean cuisine. The name is derived from papere, which in Ge'ez - an ancient language spoken in Ethiopia - meant hot. It is one of the oldest spice mixtures in the world. It was already made in the fifth century, long before people in this part of Africa were introduced to the chili pepper.
Berbere has been a familiar spice mixture for decades, only known here in its dry form. There is also a 'wet version' with fresh onion, ginger and garlic, in the dry version replaced by onion flakes, ginger and garlic powder. While the composition of berbere, as with most spice blends, can vary from region to region, shopkeeper to shopkeeper, and household to household, pepper always predominates.
Like no other country, Ethiopia has a tradition in which it integrates elements from other cultures. As far back as the Egyptians, this part of Africa was the center of the trade in spices from the Orient, which were mixed with home-grown spices, such as the korarima, and African peppers, such as timiz, the African long pepper.
Berbere is not chili powder, and many available berbere emphatically contain too much chili pepper, which suppresses the other spices. A richly filled berbere contains the following spices, most of which are roasted:
- kunitali - cumin seed,
- korarima - white cardamom,
- dimbibal - coriander,
- abish - blue fenugreek seed,
- tikuri beribere - black pepper,
- timiz - cape long peppers,
- kiloki - cloves,
- allspice, and
- besobela - ethiopian (clove) basil
- zinjibil - ginger and
- tena'adam- winter rue
Smell and taste
Berbere is spicy and spicy. No tena'adam has been processed in this berbere, which is the case in many authentic berberes. Are you curious about the influence of this passion fruit pepper on the taste, we also sell tena'adam. Dose sparingly, tena'adam has a slight bitter note.
Berbere is used in Ethiopia and Eritrea in many stews (wots) from lentils to chicken. Berbere is strong enough to also be used as a rub on red meat. One of the most important uses is in awaze, a condiment that you can also make yourself, from berbere, honey wine (t'ej or mead) and some oil.
- this berbere contains: cayenne pepper, black pepper, fenugreek, coriander, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, cumin and ginger
- contains no preservatives, and no paprika, garlic or salt
- origin: Ethiopia, Eritrea
- this berbere has been carefully composed in the United Kingdom
- the mixture may contain traces of celery and mustard
- available in glass and pouch (no test tubes)
- glass jar contains 60 grams
- stand-up pouches with a content of up to 30 to 250 grams
- larger quantities on request
- the jar is available in a tasteful gift box, consisting of a cube box filled with black tissue paper
- for an overview of our other gift packaging, please refer to the section gift packaging
- keep berbere in closed packaging
- preferably store in a dark, dry and cool place
- best before February 2025 (02/25)
- this best before date is an indication