Chicago Eats: Ethiopian Diamond

Hairstyles from different provinces in Ethiopia.
Hairstyles from different provinces in Ethiopia.

As a child growing up in an Ethiopian household, I got tired of constantly eating injera (Ethiopian food) all the time. Whenever I was hungry or wanted to get food, my mother’s answer always resulted in injera. If injera was in the fridge, which was all the time, then according to her there was no reason for me to be hungry.

After moving out of the house at 18, I started to miss it. Then once my parents moved out of Chicago to San Diego, I started to crave that shit ALL. THE. TIME. I would regularly ask my mom if there were any upcoming Ethiopian weddings so I could help myself to the never ending buffet line of my beloved injera.

You eat with your hands by using the injera to scoop your food.
You eat with your hands by using the injera to scoop your food.

When I need my injera fix, I go to Ethiopian Diamond on Broadway. As people began to catch on to Ethiopian food, Ethiopian Diamond has become such a trendy restaurant. If you come in on a Friday or Saturday night, you’ll find the house packed (mostly with non-Ethiopians!) with live music. It feels good to see people enjoy my culture’s food. It’s also inspiring to see the success of family friend, and owner of Ethiopian Diamond, Almaz Yigizaw. A true β€œstarted from the bottom now we here” story.

At first glance, Ethiopian food might look gross, but I promise, everyone that tries it, loves it. Unless you’re just a plain hater. It’s mainly popular for its vegetarian dishes of lentils and vegetable stews served on a sourdough like spongy bread (the bread is actually called injera but well call the food injera as well).

If you want to play it safe, you can order from the vegetarian dishes, the beef, lamb, goat, chicken stews, or mix and match. And if you want to be adventurous you can order my favorite: kitfo, (pictured) a medium rare-close to rare minced prime beef, marinated in mitmita, (chili pepper/spice blend) and cooked in melted butter infused with herbs. It’s usually served with gomen (cooked greens), and ayibe (a cheese mix between cottage cheese and sour cream). IT’S. SO. GOOD. Don’t knock it ’til ya try it!

Clockwise: doro wot (spicy chicken and hard boiled egg stew), greens, kitfo, ayibe, misir (spicy lentil stew), beg tibs (grilled lamb with onions and pepper), alicha (mild curry lentil stew), Center: salad with vinegar and lemon juice dressing
Clockwise: doro wot (spicy chicken and hard boiled egg stew), greens, kitfo, ayibe, misir (spicy lentil stew), beg tibs (grilled lamb with onions and pepper), alicha (mild curry lentil stew), Center: salad with vinegar and lemon juice dressing.

Ethiopian Diamond | 6120 N Broadway St, Chicago, IL 60660 (773) 338-6100 | Mon-Thurs, & Sun 11am-10:30 pm; Fri & Sat 11am-11:30 pm

Xo,

Rebecca & Ariel

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