The Ethiopian coffee ceremony


A coffee ceremony is a ritualized form of making and drinking coffee. The coffee ceremony was first practiced in Ethiopia and Eritrea. There is a routine of serving coffee on a daily basis, mainly for the purpose of getting together with relatives, neighbors, or other visitors. If coffee is politely declined, then tea (Chai) will most likely be served.

Image result for The Ethiopian coffee ceremony
Coffee is offered when visiting friends, or during festivities.

Loose grass is spread on the floor where the coffee ceremony is held, often decorated with small yellow flowers. Composite flowers are sometimes used, especially around the celebration of Meskel, an annual religious holiday in the Ethiopian Orthodox and Eritrean Orthodox churches, which commemorates the discovery of the True Cross by the Roman Empress Helena in the fourth century. .

Image result for The Ethiopian coffee ceremony
Loose grass is spread on the floor where the coffee ceremony is held.

Brewing

The ceremony is typically performed by the woman of the household and is considered an honor. The coffee is brewed by first roasting the green coffee beans over an open flame in a pan .

Image result for The Ethiopian coffee ceremony roasting beans

The coffee is brewed by first roasting the green coffee beans over an open flame in a pan .

 This is followed by the grinding of the beans, traditionally in a wooden mortar and pestle. The coffee grounds are then put into a special vessel which contain boiled water and will be left on an open flame a couple of minutes until it is well mixed with the hot water.

Image result for The Ethiopian coffee ceremony after roasting beans

After grinding, the coffee is put through a sieve several times. The boiling pot (jebena) is usually made of pottery and has a spherical base, a neck and pouring spout, and a handle where the neck connects with the base. The jebena also has a straw lid.[

Image result for jebena
The boiling pot (jebena).

Serving

The host pours the coffee for all participants by moving the tilted boiling pot over a tray with small, handleless cups from a height of one foot without stop until each cup is full. The grounds are brewed three times: the first round of coffee is called awel in Tigrinya, the second kale’i and the third baraka (‘to be blessed’). The coffee ceremony may also include burning of various traditional incense. People add sugar to their coffee, or in the countryside, sometimes salt or traditional butter. The beverage is accompanied by a small snack such as popcorn, peanuts or himbasha (also called ambasha).

Image result for himbasha

Ambasha/himbasha is sometimes used as snack during the ceremonies
Advertisements

Written by James Gathitu

I am a writer, performer, creative entrepreneur, and adventurer! My journey has been crazy and has led me at this very moment to you.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: