Major Ethiopian: Finger Licking Good… Literally

One of those rare moments happened last night, the entire polycule was off work and home at the same time.  It’s odd when it happens, almost like we don’t know what to do with ourselves, as typically our week is spent grasping for moments we can spend together.  So, in true fat kid fashion, we decided to have dinner together at one of our favorite places:  Major Ethiopian.  Now, for anyone who hasn’t eaten Ethiopian before, the experience may seem strange and remarkably unhygienic.  But to the initiated, it’s a treat.

It’s hard to be your own camera man on group shots!  From left to right: Jasmine, Joshua, Amber, and just a sliver of Collin.

A good friend of our family, Andrew, originally introduced us all to this marvelous new cuisine a couple of years ago, and when we went that first time it was to Major’s.  Since then we have checked out a couple other Ethiopian restaurants that have popped up around town, but none compare.   So what actually is Ethiopian?  Well, it’s a large central plate full of food:  Stewed meats, lentils, cabbage, spinach, etc.  It’s all served on top of a large piece of spongy bread called “injera”.  You don’t use a fork, instead you

The food is so good, and we were so excited when it hit our table, that we didn’t manage to get a photo before we all dug in.  This is an image from their website of what a plate looks like before four hungry fat kids dig in.

tear off an additional piece of injera and use it to grab a bit of food from the central plate using your hands.  It can be a messy process, especially when you get down towards the bottom of the plate, as the piece of injera on the bottom of the central plate has soaked up all of the delicious juices and has turned mushy from it’s over saturation.  This is cuisine that you share with people when you no longer have to keep up appearances, not necessarily good first date food (although, I say that, but I have taken a date here and they loved it).

When we came in we got our usual waitress.  She is a petite woman with a big smile.  She recognized us right away and told us we could sit where ever we would like.  And truly we had our pick of the litter. I worry about Major’s, it’s slow every time we come in, but they keep surviving. There was one other guy there when we arrived.  And by the time we left, two other tables had come in.  Not exactly a busy night by most restaurant standards.

Half way through the meal we realized we forgot to take a picture!  We were loving every bite!

We found a table and had a seat, and went about the process of cleaning our hands and looking at the menu.  We always look, not that it makes much of a difference.  We always order a combination platter, and substitute the lamb for beef (I’m allergic to lamb), but still we look, maybe one day we will do something else.

The combination platter features about eight different entrees, some chicken, some beef.  And then a variety of side items: three different kinds of lentils, cabbage, spinach, salad, etc.  Normally this also has two lamb dishes on it, but like I said, allergic.  Some of the food is a little spicy, others are very mild.  Given the nature of how you eat the meal (a bite of this, a bite of that) I find that the spice isn’t too big of an issue for me.  Joshua adds spoonfuls of the “green sauce” to make his bites extra extra spicy.

Joshua with his “clean plate” award: More food!

Towards the end of the meal, we were all stuffed, although Joshua managed to scrape the plate clean, eating the last of the mushy injera, and practically licking the plate clean.  Our waitress said she had a special reward for clearing our plate:  she brought us a small to-go box with more injera and more lentils.  It was a very sweet gesture and Josh beamed from ear to ear about it.

After dinner, Amber headed on home (she has been feeling under the weather lately) and Joshua, Jasmine, and I all went to see a movie.  We headed over to the Georgetown 14 Theater, and much to our surprise there were having $5 night!  For first run movies!  It was a super pleasant surprise.  And halfway through our movie one of their attendants popped in carrying a giant bag full of left over popcorn and asked if we were interested in having it!  Such a thoughtful crew! We will certainly be visiting them again.

All and all it was a wonderful midweek evening out.

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