Friday, January 1, 2010

It's Just What You're Used To...

I recently received my first Ethiopian Cookbook in the mail. It is a wonderful cookbook with Ethiopian history and many pictures of Ethiopian food. I am trying to prepare food that will make Sunshine and Little Buddy's tummies happy. I sat down with Sunshine and showed her the pictures and asked her which ones looked yummy. She flipped through the pages slowly and stopped when she got to a page with a recipe for "Genfo." She jumped up and down and hugged me and said, "This one, this one, yummy, yummy!"

As I looked at the recipe I realized that it was an Ethiopian porridge. It is what they would eat for breakfast. She made a big stirring motion to show me how it had been made at the orphanage. I checked the recipe for ingredients and told she and her brother that I could make it for them. The happy dance ensued.

This morning I made my first batch of Genfo and God showed me something in the process.

Genfo is very close to play dough. If you have ever made home made play dough on the stove, you could make Genfo. It has water, flour (I used barley), and salt. It literally becomes the consistency of play dough. It is then placed in an oiled bowl. After taking a spoon and making a crevice in the middle, oil mixed with berbere (an Ethiopian spice similar to chili powder) is poured in the middle of the Genfo.

I looked at Stand-Up Dad and said, "This can't be right. I don't know if they will eat this." I placed it in front of them and they squealed with delight. They ate and giggled happily.

I was amazed. If Genfo had been placed in front of me for breakfast I would have turned up my nose and refused to even try it. I realized that some of the foods we place in front of them must bring the same reaction to their minds. I thought back to all the new foods that they have tried obediently and willingly over the last month and I was humbled and impressed with these two little ones. I will try to remember the Genfo the next time they turn up their nose at something new.

In the end, it is really just what you are used to eating that brings comfort.

My first attempt at Genfo, which my kiddos call "Got."
Happy kiddos! I know Sunshine doesn't look happy, just a bad picture, she ate the whole bowlful!
Sweet Momma


Chris said...

wowwy! good for you! can you send me a link for that cookbook? Or the name of it? That would be great! Glad to hear things are going well!

Chris Butler

Julie said...


I would also love to know which cookbook you purchased. Could you send me an email with the name?

Thanks so much,