Ashee Ethiopian Cuisine

Ashee Ethiopian Cuisine
904 NE Maynard Road, Cary • Reedy Creek Plaza
(919) 463-0435 •
Average lunch entrée: $10-$12

Behind the scenes at this eight-table restaurant work four sisters, cooking up from-scratch traditional Ethiopian cuisine daily. Meazash Gultimet and her sisters opened the restaurant in December 2012 because they wanted to introduce others to the cooking of their homeland.
“The food is very healthy food,” she said. “Nothing is packed, it is all fresh.”

Ethiopian food is marked by the use of lentils, chickpeas and plenty of vegetables like peppers, onions, carrots and cabbage. Flavors of ginger, garlic, chili pepper and curry season several preparations, which are served atop injera, a large flatbread somewhat similar to a crepe.

Meals are eaten without utensils by tearing off small bits of the injera and pinching portions of the entrée with the bread. Ashee offers traditional dishes such as Kitfo, beef, often rare, warmed in spiced butter and served with Ethiopian cottage cheese, and Doro Wot, chicken cooked in a spicy berbere sauce with hard boiled eggs.

Following meals, guests can enjoy a coffee ceremony, a ritual observed multiple times a day in the east African nation. Typically, friends gather to relax, socialize and sip the strong brew made from coffee beans roasted in a skillet.

“If someone comes to your house, the first thing you ask is, ‘Can I make a coffee for you?’” said Gultimet. “You don’t drink coffee alone. It’s good for you to spend the time with friends.”

Patron Ebonee Ruther was excited to discover a taste of Africa near her Cary home.

“I love the spice and the flavor,” she said. “It’s authentic. You know you’re getting real food from Ethiopia.”

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