2 Jun 2020

Make the most of lockdown and dedicate some of that extra time to learning something new…

Visit an Art Exhibition

Many exhibitions have been forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic. This has forced cultural institutions to explore alternative ways to showcase their offerings with online exhibitions now on the rise.

Aïda Muluneh’s Homebound: A Journey in Photography

This exhibition was originally set to open on 23rd March but was postponed due to the pandemic.

The first part of Aïda Muluneh’s Homebound: A Journey in Photography, chronicles Aïda’s journey as an artist/photojournalist and her contributions to imaging and image-making in photographic-based works since returning to Ethiopia in 2007, after years of living and practising in North America.

The exhibition focuses on a select number of works  with thematic foci that exemplify her interest in issues – from history, identity, politics, home and the current environmental and climate crisis.

The exhibition includes a selection of Aïda’s earlier photojournalistic work when she served as a photographer for the American daily newspaper The Washington Post.

The second part, Addis Foto Fest: Nine Years Survey, curated by Aïda, reflects on her journey as a founder and director of Addis Foto Fest, established in 2010, a biennial festival of photography organized by Desta for Africa Creative Consulting PLC.

To view the virtual tour and download the exhibition booklet, go to http://theafricainstitute.org/aida-muluneh.php.

Cook Ethiopian

Cooking is wonderfully therapeutic. Take your culinary prowess up a level by learning how to cook Ethiopian food. Not only is Ethiopian food delicious, it is also unique.

Chef Yohanis’ debut cookbook, Ethiopia: Recipes and Traditions from the Horn of Africa, recently won the 2020 James Beard Foundation Book Award (International).

The cookbook boasts a wealth of Ethiopian dishes for all diets, including vegan and vegetarian, with photos of Ethiopia’s artisans and stunning landscapes by Peter Cassidy. It demonstrates why Ethiopian food should be considered one of the world’s greatest, most singular and most enchanting cuisines.

To celebrate his award, Chef Yohanis has shared one of his recipes from the book.

Teff Tagliatelle with sprouted Fenugreek and carrots

Serves 4




  • 1 tbsp whole fenugreek seeds
  • 3 medium-small carrots, peeled and cut into bite-size lengths
  • Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
  • A sprig of fresh thyme
  • 360ml chicken stock
  • 240ml single cream
  • 1 heaped tbsp blue cheese
  • 150g pitted black olives
  • 1 tbsp butter

For the pasta dough

  • 165g teff flour
  • 150g plus 2 tbsps plain flour, + more for dusting
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


Two days before, start sprouting the fenugreek seeds. Place them in a glass jar, cover with a piece of mesh netting over the neck and secure with a rubber band. Fill the jar with water and soak for 6–8 hours. Drain, rinse and drain again. Place the jar in the light and wait for about 2 days until sprouts appear, rinsing and draining the seeds twice a day. Rinse a final time and spread out on a plate to dry.

In a saucepan of boiling salted water, add the carrots and cook for about 10 minutes until just tender. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of cold water to chill. Drain and set aside.

Now make the pasta dough.

On a large, clean work surface, mound the flours and make a well. Crack the eggs into the centre and add 1½ tablespoons of the oil. Beat the eggs with a fork and then mix in flour from the sides, gradually incorporating it all into a single ball. Dust a clean work surface with plain flour and patiently knead the dough until supple, adding a few drops of cold water if necessary.

Cover the dough with a cloth and set aside to rest for 30 minutes.

Generously dust a clean surface again with plain flour and divide the dough into 4 equal balls. Press into a flat disc and then roll. Using a rolling pin or dowel, roll away from the centre, stretching the dough outwards until the thickness of about 1.5mm.

Either cut by hand or using a pasta machine. To cut by hand: Flour both sides of the stretched sheet and loosely roll up into a cylinder. Using a sharp knife, cut 6mm-wide strips and then gently unravel. Dust with flour to keep them from sticking together and gently lay on floured tea-towels. Repeat with the remaining dough and then set aside to dry for 30 minutes.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, add the thyme and stock and cook, simmering, for 5–8 minutes until reduced by about one-third. Stir in the cream and blue cheese and simmer until it has the consistency of a sauce. Remove from the heat. Add the olives and 2–3 tablespoons of the sprouted fenugreek and set aside to infuse for 10 minutes.

In a sauté pan, melt the butter over medium heat and brown the carrots for about 10 minutes. Set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add the pasta and cook for about 5 minutes until al dente, stirring from time to time to keep the pasta from clumping together. Drain and shake off any water that clings to the pasta.

Toss the pasta with the sauce and carrots and serve.

Keep Fit at Home

Weekly workouts by Great Ethiopian Run

In recent weeks, the Great Ethiopian Run (GER) has been encouraging people to stay home and do short periods of exercise, as part of their ongoing campaign to promote healthy living.

Backed by a campaign led by long distance legend, Haile Gebrselassie, and other famous Ethiopian athletes, the GER launched its free weekly exercise classes. To take part, go to GER’s YouTube page at https://bit.ly/GERxWorkouts. The Embassy will also re-share the exercise videos across our social media platforms: @EthioEmbassyUK.

Stay Safe Ethiopia – 5km virtual run

Though GER had to cancel some of its race events, a virtual 5km race in place of the annual road relay is scheduled to take place from 1st–7th June.

Registration for the race “Stay Safe Ethiopia – 5km virtual run” has started. Please register online at https://bit.ly/GER5kRun or email GER at virtualrun@ethiopianrun.org.

A registration entry fee of £10 has been set, with all fees being donated to combat COVID-19.

Please note that there are a maximum number of 500 places for the race. Once all 500 places have been taken, registration for the race will close.

Every participant in the 5km virtual run will receive their own finishers’ medal which will be delivered to their home. Organizers will make sure each participant has completed the 5km run on the specified dates.


Run with the world’s best athletes – Kenenisa and Kipchoge

 Virtual races don’t get better than this! Distance running greats Kenenisa Bekele, Kenya’s Eluid Kipchoge, and others will be taking part in a virtual team relay marathon on 6th – 7th June 2020.

To participate in the “MA RA TH ON,” which is free and open to all runners worldwide to enter, participants can register in teams of four, or can register individually and be randomly placed on a team with three other runners. And if you’re lucky, you could be teamed up with Kenenisa or Eluid!

Each relay runner will run 10.5km sometime between 12:01 a.m. on 6th June and 11:59 p.m. on 7th June, for a total of 42km (26.2 miles). The four 10.5km splits will be combined for an overall team time, to determine the winning team.

“We all miss the excitement of the big city marathons and hope this will bring our athletes and fans together,” NN Running Team director Jos Hermens said in a press release. “In these difficult times we like to challenge people to stay active and to go for a run.”

Registration now open at www.nnrunningteam.com/marathon.

Watch a documentary

Ethiopian distance running legend, Kenenisa Bekele, looks back on some of the highs and lows of his incredible career so far.

The first and only athlete to be crowned an Olympic, World Outdoor, World Indoor and World Cross Country champion, he has snared 21 global titles (including U20 titles) and shattered six world records during a glittering career.

Born in the Oromia region of Ethiopia, hotbed for so much of the world’s premier endurance running talent, the former footballer quickly enjoyed success as a runner. In 2001, he grabbed the World Junior Cross Country title and just 12 months later secured the senior short and long course double at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Dublin. His triumph in the Irish capital ushered in a period of global dominance on both track and cross country.

Kenenisa went on to secure a further nine World Cross Country titles and five World outdoor track titles and three Olympic crowns; winning 10,000m gold at the 2004 Athens Games and at the 2008 Beijing Games he became the first man since his countryman Miruts Yifter, 28 years earlier, to complete the 5,000m and 10,000m double.

During this period of unprecedented distance dominance, he smashed six world records and still holds world record marks for the 5,000m (12:37.35) and 10,000m (26:17.53).

In recent times, Kenenisa has switched his focus to the marathon. After an impressive debut over the distance in Paris, when he set a course record 2:05:03, he has continued to impress. In 2016, he scalped two minutes from his lifetime best to set an Ethiopian record of 2:03:03 to climbing to number two all-time. Kenenisa endured a challenging couple of seasons with injury but bounced back to his vintage best at the 2019 Berlin Marathon. There he produced a performance to stun the athletics world by winning in a time of 2:01:41 – a tantalising two seconds shy of Eliud Kipchoge’s world record.

Kenenisa opened his competitive 2020 campaign with victory in a course record time of 60:22 at the Vitality Big Half in London.


Support local business

Habesha Care Packages

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a challenging time for everyone, but has brought about opportunities for others. Selam Amare, an Ethiopian social entrepreneur has launched Habesha Care Packages – aimed at highlighting small Ethiopian businesses and start-ups to help market their products.

Starting from £15, there are a number of packages, including different products such as Ethiopian coffee, books, food products and garments.

For further information, visit www.selamleethiopia.com.

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