30 Apr 2020

Now that you have gone through all your favourite shows, make the most of lockdown and dedicate some of that extra time to learning something new…from cooking to virtual tours and new books, we have you covered
…and we have put an Ethiopian twist on it!

Visit Ethiopia

While travel has come to a near standstill during the Coronavirus pandemic, technology is allowing us to visit almost any place on the planet.

Getting to Know Ethiopia’s Gelada Baboons

A virtual visit to the highlands of Ethiopia is more fun that a barrel full of monkeys in that you will meet one of the world’s most fascinating primates — the Gelada baboons.

The baboons have a dynamic and complex social structure, second only to man’s, making them a fascinating animal to watch. And these days – with most of us self-isolating and working from home – taking a break to enjoy a slice of nature provides the perfect antidote to long days in the house.

To that end, Great BIG Nature’s latest video — featuring the gelada baboons — doesn’t disappoint. Shot in the Simien Mountains of Ethiopia 3,000 metres above sea level, we meet a group of baboons carrying on and cavorting.

These baboons are easily identifiable by a patch of bare skin on their chests, which glows red when ready to mate and has given rise to a nickname — bleeding heart monkeys.

The baboons are also unique in that they are the only surviving species of grazing monkey. They spend up to 60% of their day feeding – more than any other primate.

As night descends, the baboons descend the cliffs at the edge of their grazing areas to sleep on tiny rock ledges until the sun rises, and grazing begins once again.

Once we recover the pandemic, make sure to book a ticket and visit Ethiopia, the Land of Origins. For now, visit Ethiopia’s Simien Mountains virtually…

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.

In his stunning debut cookbook, Ethiopia: Recipes and Traditions from the Horn of Africa, renowned chef, Yohanis Gebreyesus, takes the reader on a journey through all the essential dishes of Ethiopia, telling wondrous stories along the way.

There are recipes for all types of diets, including vegans and vegetarians – from the famous Doro Wat, chicken slowly stewed with berbere spice; to Yeassa Alicha, curried fish stew; and Siga Tibs, flash-fried beef cubes.

The cookbook also boasts a wealth of vegetarian dishes such as Gomen, minced collard greens with ginger and garlic; Azifa, green lentil salad; and the most popular, Shiro Wat, spicy chickpea flour stew.

Complete with photography of Ethiopia’s stunning landscapes and vibrant artisans by Peter Cassidy, this volume demonstrates why Ethiopian food should be considered as one of the world’s greatest, most singular and most enchanting cuisines.

Published by Hachette (UK) and Interlink Publishing (North America), Chef Yohanis’ cookbook is available at most online stores.



Comfort in a bowl of soup! Chef Yohanis discovered this soup at a fish market on Lake Hawassa’s eastern shore. Apparently, the soup has some medicinal properties!

Asa Shorba
(Doctor Marsano’s Fish Soup)

Serves 4


  • 2 ¼ lb (1kg) fish bones, heads, or small fish of white-fleshed, non-oily variety
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • 2 tbsp grated or finely chopped ginger
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped jalapenos or other hot fresh green chili
  • 1 tbsp ground turmeric
  • 2 medium whole fish, such as sea bream, tilapia, or red snapper (about 1 lb/450 g each) cleaned; or 4 fish steaks or generous-size fillets
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Cornbread, to serve


Place the fish bones in a large soup pot, cover with 81/2 cups (2 litres) of water and bring to a boil. Skim off any foam.

Meanwhile in a food processor, blend the garlic, ginger and jalapenos with a touch of the simmering fish stock, to make a thick paste, or mash with  a pestle and mortar. Blend in the turmeric and spoon it all into the pot. Partly cover the pot with a lid and simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Make a diagonal slit in the side of each fish and season with salt and pepper. Carefully lower the fish into the liquid and simmer for 4-8 minutes, depending on the size of the fish, until done.

When cooked, with a slotted spoon transfer the whole fish to a large plate and fillet, discarding the spines and heads.

To serve, place a piece of fillet in each soup bowl and ladle on plenty of broth. Serve with cornbread.

Keep Fit at Home

Keeping your physical and mental fitness levels up has never been more important!

Weekly workouts by Great Ethiopian Run

During recent weeks, the Great Ethiopian Run (GER) has been encouraging people to stay at home and do short periods of exercise.

Backed by a campaign led by long-distance legend, Haile Gebrselassie, and other famous Ethiopian athletes, the GER has launched its free weekly exercise classes and is asking people to sign up.

Though it has had to cancel some of its race events, plans are also afoot to stage, in June, a virtual 5km race in place of the annual road relay. “We want to play our part in fighting the spread of the pandemic,” explained GER Operations Manager Dagim Teshome, who came up with the idea of the virtual race where participants post their activity on the GER Facebook page using an app to record their performance.

“This race will encourage people to go out and exercise while at the same time keeping their physical distance from others.”

Weeks 1 and 2 of the home workouts are now live on GER’s YouTube page. Take part online at https://bit.ly/GERxWorkouts. The Embassy will also re-share the exercise videos on Facebook: facebook.com/EthioEmbassyUK.


Ethiopian Virtual Run

Grand African Run will be hosting an Ethiopian Virtual run on 16th May 2020 at 3.00pm BST (10.00am EDT) and is inviting everyone to take part!

Joining you will be some of Ethiopia’s legendary athletes who want to help keep our spirits up and to say “Stay safe and stay strong. We will get through this together.”

You can take part in the Ethiopian Virtual Run on Zoom, Facebook Live and YouTube Live. Run, jog, or walk in your living room, garden, or treadmill with others from all over the world.

Registration now open at www.africanrun.com. Proceeds from the event will be donated to Ethiopia-based NGOs helping out the COVID-19 mitigation effort.

Learn a new language - Ge’ez (ግዕዝ)

Dr. Logan Williams, a lecturer from Durham University, will be running an online Ge’ez (ግዕዝ) course via Zoom from 8th May for 20 weeks.

Ge’ez is the classical language of Ethiopia which is still used as a liturgical language by Ethiopian Christians. The earliest known inscriptions in the Ge’ez script date to the 5th century BC.


Ancient Ge’ez texts are deeply important to the history of ancient Judaism, early Christianity and Christianity in Ethiopia. Yet unfortunately studying them in their original language is neglected.

This 20-week course seeks to remedy that problem by going through the basic morphology, grammar and syntax of Ge’ez in an accessible way.

Throughout the course you will read 1 Enoch 1–5 in Ge’ez, and after finishing the course, students will have the option of staying on to read Matthew 1–5 and 1 Enoch 45–57 together.

The 20-week course runs from 8th May for one hour a week and is free. But for those able and willing, donations are welcome.

For enquiries, please contact Dr Logan by email on logan.a.williams@durham.ac.uk.

Read a new book

As we look into more productive ways to spend time at home, reading is on the top of many people’s lists. Reading has many benefits and has been proven to help reduce stress and boost wellbeing.

Songs We Learn from Trees: An Anthology of Ethiopian Amharic Poetry

Edited and translated by Chris Beckett and Alemu Tebeje, this is the very first anthology of Ethiopian poetry in English, packed with all the energy, wit and heartache of a beautiful country and language.

From folk and religious poems, warrior boasts, praises of women and kings and modern plumbing; through a flowering of literary poets in the twentieth century; right up to thirty of the most exciting contemporary Amharic poets working both inside and outside the country.

The book can be purchased online at www.carcanet.co.uk. Exclusive 25% off RRP is available by using the following discount code: ETHIOPIA25.


Listen to a Podcast

Invest Africa, a leading UK-based pan-African business and investment platform that promotes trade and investment in Africa, has launched a series of podcasts, Invest Africa Insights, which explore Africa’s key economic trends and the issues facing businesses and investors across the continent.

For Ethiopia, H.E. Dr Eyob Tekalign Tolina, State Minister of Finance, and Gebeya Inc., an Ethiopian tech start-up, are featured.

Meet the Minister – H.E. Dr Eyob Tekalign Tolina, State Minister of Finance for Ethiopia

Invest Africa sits down with H.E. Dr Eyob Tekalign Tolina, Ethiopia’s State Minister of Finance for insight into how Ethiopia is combating coronavirus, the current state of the economic reform agenda and an update on Ethiopia’s upcoming elections.

Listen on: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts


Meet the Entrepreneur – Amadou Daffe, CEO & Co-Founder of Gebeya Inc.

The word Gebeya means “market” in Amharic, Ethiopia’s national language.

Invest Africa Insights sits down with Amadou Daffe, CEO & Co-Founder of Gebeya Inc., to talk about the company’s monumental rise. From early beginnings to the mega seed-funding round led by Partech and Orange, Gebeya exploded onto the African tech scene, to create a self-sustainable ecosystem that trains, hires and cultivates top talented African Software Engineers.

They examine Gebeya’s standing as an incubator and accelerator for techpreneurs operating across the continent, the importance of African-led training academies and advice for fellow entrepreneurs looking to raise funding in a post-Corona world.

Listen on: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts.

Watch an Ethiopian Film

There’s no doubt that we are watching a lot more TV at the moment. While terrestrial ratings are up, streaming services have been surging.

Ethiopian film, Enchained (Quragnaye), available on habeshaview

 Online streaming service habeshaview is inviting audiences around the world to enjoy the award-winning movie Enchained (ቁራኛዬ) from the comfort of their own home.

Enchained is easily accessible by downloading the habeshaview app. After a one-time purchase, viewers will have access to the movie on any of their favourite smart devices.

Enchained is a historical and fictional drama set in 1910 that explores the traditional justice system and its effects. It was selected as the Opening Movie of the prestigious 2020 New African Film Festival in the United States.

The Ethiopian production won the top prizes at the Alem Cinema Awards and Lizzo Awards. The film has been screened internationally in London, Addis Ababa, New York and Washington.

Visit habeshaview.com for more information.

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Now that you have gone through all your favourite shows, make the most of lockdown and dedicate some of that extra time to learning something new…from cooking to virtual tours and new books, we have you covered ...and we have put an Ethiopian twist on it!
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