what coffee tells us about Ethiopia
If a beverage should represent Ethiopia, it would be coffee, obviously. Native from those hills, each of its multiples flavors represent the diversity of its people.
Strong & affirmed or sweet & warm, a cup of coffee welcomes its drinker every morning. Most drunk beverage in the world, only few of its consumers really know about its History and its native country.
In Ethiopia, coffee is more than just a cup, it is a religion, with its associeted cult, an important tradition and patrimony its citizens tend to keep trough the ages.
Indeed, through its use, this little bean tells us the story of Ethiopia.
PLACE OF WOMEN
Women hold a position of power in some African countries, notably in Ethiopia. Her central position during food rituals such as the coffee ceremony underlines her importance in society.
Meals or food intake correspond to key events in men's lives. This allows them to represent themselves among themselves and in their social hierarchy. Their wealth is evaluated in terms of their food value: the abundance of land, the quantity of livestock and the vegetation surrounding their homes. Placing women at the centre of these important moments in Ethiopian life raises them to the top of the hierarchy.
From its discovery in the 9th century to its current world export, the history of coffee and its export could tell the story of the country, tracing its exchanges with the world through the ages. In 2017, the export of this seed brought the Ethiopian people 866 M$ (220,000 tonnes of coffee, half the production)
With more than 57 destinations, Ethiopia proves its openness to the world and its willingness to find its place in the international market. The fifth largest coffee producer in the world, but first in terms of "exceptional coffee", highly coveted in the luxury market, Ethiopia hopes to increase its production and yield, aiming for 1 billion dollars in revenue by 2018.
As we take a cup of coffee every morning or quickly at the bar counter, they spends hours preparing, serving and drinking it.
The coffee ceremony is called "Jebena Buna"
Jebena is the vessel where coffee is cooked and BUNA means "ceremony" in Amharic.
The ceremony of coffee is always achieved by women, passed on from mother to daughter. it takes place in front of all the guests, seated on large green leaf, on the floor.
The coffee grain is roasted above the brasero, crushed in the mukecha, and then boiled in the Jebena.
You'll never have such a fresh coffee...
Instead of one cup, they'll serve you three. The cups are named after the legends of the discovery of the coffee : awel, kale I et baraka. Their tastes differ because of infusion, as the same beans are used for the three cups, adding every time new water.
They enjoy coffee with some popcorn, peanuts and other roasted cereals. They can drink coffee with some sugar and honey or SALTED, WITH SPICES and BERBERE BUTTER.
the fairy tale
Ethopian history always related to legends.
The legend of Kaldi, a 9th century Abyssinian goat breeder, tells the story of the discovery of the fabulous pink coffee berry.
The Breeder saw his three goats (AWEL, KALE I & BARAKA) eat the berry and suddenly become hyperactive. Curious, he brought the said seeds to a Muslim monk in the neighbouring monastery.
The Holy Man disapproved of the consumption of these berries, seeing them as evil. He then threw them into the fire, but the aromas only increased tenfold.
Coffee as we know it today was born! The etymology of coffee comes from the region where it was discovered, the Kaffa region in the south-west of Ethiopia.
It was a Sufi master named Ali Ben Omar al-Shadili, also known as the "Saint of Mocha", who brought coffee from Ethiopia to Yemen. There he founded a monastery where coffee was used to keep the initiates awake during night rituals.
Used as a dopant, coffee began to develop in the 15th century with these "Sufis", Muslim monks. Coffee was thus called "qahwa" (which means "invigorating" in Arabic) and has kept this name in Arab countries. Its consumption spread throughout the Muslim world, encouraged by the ban on alcohol in this culture.