Welcome to Al Habasha Restaurant - first Ethiopian Restaurant in Dubai
You will indeed love Africa proclaimed an Ethiopian Airlines poster on the yellow-washed wall at Ethio al Habasha. Beside it another poster, flushed with the heart-warming image of a rich, dark Ethipian stew, read "Eat today, diet tomorrow". All wise words, i though, as I tore off a billowing flap of injera bread, plunged it into the meaty brown gravy of the alitcha menchet and lashed it greedily into mouth. Tomorrow never comes, after all. Once our eyes had adjusted to the muted light in this modestly proportioned Ethiopian restaurant, we were able to focus on a calamity of color. A patriotic assembly of red, gold and green cushions was laid out neatly along the back all beyond a row of mesob, or traditional basket tables, surrounded by bamboo seats. Opposite, there were low stools of carved dark wood with plump leather cushions resting on animal pelt floor coverings. For the conventionally inclined, there were also four glass-top tables and chairs in the window corner. Everything basket radiantly under a ceiling painted light blue and white like a cloud-skimmed sky. It was an extraordinary place to eat extraordinary food. A broad round tray was brought to our table laden with injera, a large sourdough flat bread made with teff flour, which is traditionally eaten throughout Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, and parts of Sudan. The spongy, grey pancake-like blanket folded and crumpled upon itself in soft waves like surface of some undiscovered planet, and the rest of the food was served in bowls upon it. The injera was tablecloth, place mat, plate and - in the absence of any spoons or forks - cutlery, all in one. So we ripped it into handy scoop-like shreds and got stuck in. The alitcha menchet was a mild and meaty sauce with delicate nuggets of ground beef, which swamped a huge hard-boiled egg. The slowly simmered sauce had a mild, peppery taste with hints of garlic and ginger, and suggestion of sweetness that offset the slightly sour flavor of injera. Alongside it was the yebeg key wot, a spicer stew, studded with tender lamb pieces in an oily sauce. The derak tibs followed, which was a dry dish featuring morsels of sauteed lamb, onion and punchy green chillies next to saucer of pepper and mustard dip. But it was the ominously sound-ing siq sickoosh that stole the show with its rich, pepper sauce and jutting leg of lamb, which yielded soft, flavorsome meat and sumptuous marrow that just had to be sucked out of the bone. In the midst of all this great food, tomorrow was place far, far away. In need of a caffeine-kick to stave off an apres-lunch lull we ordered coffee. Called buna, the thick hot liquid was poured into thimble-stile cups via a jabana, or traditional clay coffee pot. It is then savoured strong, black and with sugar. Never mind about dieting tomorrow - with this stuff racing around our veins, we probably wouldn't sleep for a decade. But even with eyes as wide as Great Rift Valley itself, we were still able to make sketchy plans for a return visit - how about say in 24 hours? You might well already love Africa and if you have a penchant for good, traditional and homely food, thick meaty stews with a spicy kick and dining environment that's totally out of the ordinary, you will indeed love Al Habasha Restaurant.
James Brennan explores the flavours of Ethiopia and enjoys spicy stews at Ethio Al Habasha Restaurant.
The National arts&life.
*******SupremeMasterTV**** – Shining World Compassion Award: Bambar Children’s Care Center in Mongolia (In Mongolian). Episode: 1752, Air Date: 2 July 2011.
Today’s Enlightening Entertainment will be presented in Mongolian, with subtitles in Arabic, Aulacese (Vietnamese), Chinese, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Thai.
Everywhere in the world, we can observe and be touched by acts of kindness. People from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures extend themselves beyond the call of duty to help others unconditionally. Through their noble deeds, humanity as a whole is elevated.
To commend virtuous actions and encourage more people to be inspired by their examples, Supreme Master Ching Hai has lovingly created a series of awards, including the Shining World Leadership Award, Shining World Compassion Award, Shining World Hero and Heroine Awards, Shining World Honesty Award, Shining World Protection Award, Shining World Intelligence Award, and Shining World Inventor Award, to recognize some of the most exemplary, generous, caring, and courageous people who walk amongst us.
Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa is the founder and director of the Bambar Children’s Care Center in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. She established this special kindergarten in 1998 to help young children in need.
All the children who attend our kindergarten are from a family where the parents are serving a sentence in jail, or the parents are disabled, or from very disadvantaged families. The main reason for opening this kindergarten was just after moving to a new district called Tolgoit, I met two orphaned children. They were crying while walking. And they attracted my attention.
So I asked them why they were crying. They replied that both their father and mother had died. They didn’t have anyone to care for them and they were adopted by one family. But the couple who adopted those two children were very strict and cruel people. So it gave me the idea to empty my own house and establish a kindergarten, especially for those underprivileged children who have a hard life. And I established this kindergarten in 1998 and since then we have been working here exactly 11 years.
Starting with 40 children and four staff members, the Bambar Children’s Care Center has successfully aided hundreds of vulnerable children over the years, with the government’s support.
As of today, 560 pupils then transferred to primary school from our nursery school. I am very happy when I come to work, because we work with such pure, pretty and lovable children who give us nice and positive energy. So, our daily work is always full of happiness and fun. Of course, full of love, yes, the love of the children and the love of the teacher as well. In this aspect, our work involves compassion and love in a day-to-day progress.
The Center is known for helping its students in the areas of self-cultivation and personal development. The children learn to be well-mannered and disciplined. Also, children have opportunities to attend national competitions and develop their talents. Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa and her staff nurture the children in a warm family atmosphere.
Our children said they missed the teachers so much when they come back from just a week-long holiday. They often call us their “mom.” Yes, now we teachers became their second mothers. Therefore, they share all their happiness and sorrow with us. Most of the children who are from the first graduating class of our orphanage are university students now. We plan to celebrate together with them.
As a caring vegetarian, Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa had the idea to provide vegetarian food to the children since the Center began. Today, one class of bright young children has been thriving on all-plant-based meals.
Of the 12 charitable kindergartens which are located in the Songinokhairkhan district, our kindergarten is the first to start a vegetarian class and to continue having one. We buy soybeans and with them we are making soy milk for our children. We realized that there is a lot of calcium in this soy milk. We make soy milk every morning and give it to them. Also we give them soy meats. We make fried dumpling, pirojki and soup with soy meat and give it to our children. They love these dishes so much. They like their food very much and eat them so enthusiastically.
Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa also has been actively explaining the health and environmental benefits of a vegetarian diet, not only to its own students and staff, but also to other kindergartens.
Now, our children have two rabbits and one hen They love them very much. We teach them through the lessons and help them learn correctly how to love our nature and the world as well as how to love whole planet. So, we often think of helping our children to be compassionate and kind humans. Our teachers already became vegans. Moreover, one of our classes is becoming pure vegan. So now, our summer kindergarten is going to be pure vegan soon, too.
The Bambar Children’s Care Center also has a vegetable garden for the children to explore and appreciate.
We have a little lovely greenhouse at our orphanage. We plant cucumbers and tomatos in that small greenhouse at every spring season. We celebrate our harvest celebration so nicely, for example, involving our children’s parents, grandmothers, grandfathers and their siblings by allowing them bring birds and rabbits.
And also, we teach our children and make them understand how useful and effective and nice it is to be vegan. Even the workers and children of the adjacent and neighboring kindergartens and orphanages supported us very much when they spent one day with us seeing what kinds of foodand drinks we use.
Since learning about Supreme Master Ching Hai and her endeavors to save the planet through the compassionate vegan solution, Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa has been inspired to spread the urgent Earth-saving message.
We would like to help this compassionate and kindhearted Master, I mean, by respecting and adoring her great work. Thus, we organized the photo competition with the topic of “Let’s Save the Planet” and it is going to be displayed in public soon by our children’s care center.
The Bambar Children’s Care Center has plans to expand with a summer orphanage which will be vegetarian.
So, we are going to establish our second orphanage there, the place with beautiful surroundings of nature such as trees, rivers and streams.
For offering selfless service to Mongolian children in need as well as lovingly promoting the plant-based diet by example, Supreme Master Ching Hai honored Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa and the Bambar Children's Care Center with the Shining World Compassion Award along with US$10,000 to support their good work.
“Dear Ms. Sanjaa, It is with a heart warmed with delight by the beauty of your life’s work that we present to the Bambar Children’s Care Center the “Shining World Compassion Award.” With admiration and gratitude, we present this Award in recognition of your devoted loving-kindness in providing comfort to impoverished children and your visionary spirit of service.
You have opened your loving arms to help these vulnerable children, and the Bambar Children’s Care Center is the treasured manifestation of this noble love in action. Providing for the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of kids from the Ger district, you daily offer nourishing food, warm clothing, education and tender-hearted guidance to your young charges. You give with such love that your children are pleased to stay in touch with you, even after they have graduated from your care.
Understanding their needs at the deepest level, you offer youngsters the pure and blameless vegetarian diet that promotes, not only the clarity of their minds and emotions, but harms no innocent animal, and protects our imperiled planet from many environmental hazards. In everything you do, and in all the ways you do it, you are such a shining and beautiful example of how to be the best kind of human being on Earth. In offering you this Award, we ourselves feel honoured and blessed with the opportunity to know you.
For being an angel of light, radiating heavenly kindness and love, for understanding the deeper reasons for purity of diet, for being a safe shelter where children may come in and warm their precious selves, and for your extended dedication to their welfare, we hereby applaud and celebrate the compassionate deeds of Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa, Founder and Director of the Bambar Children’s Care Center. With Great Honour, Love and Blessings, Supreme Master Ching Hai”
In addition to the award, the US$10,000 donation was also presented along with Supreme Master Ching Hai’s music CDs and DVDs, and her #1 international bestselling books, “The Dogs in My Life,” “The Birds in My Life,” and “The Noble Wilds.”
The award, presented by the Master, Supreme Master Ching Hai, is not only for me, but also for our colleagues and for our children, too. It seems like it is not even enough if I just tell the Master “Thank you” again and again, I think.
May children live peacefully in the motherland and may plants and trees be always green and prosperous, and may the birds and animals be free and peaceful in their nature. That is what we really, really want and that is what we dream about very much. Our dreams are all the same with the dreams of the Supreme Master Ching Hai. I wish all children in the world, all different planetary living beings, flora and fauna in the world, will be overjoyed in the tremendous of love of the Master.
Thank you, Master Ching Hai!
Thank you, Ms. Tsogzolmaa Sanjaa and the Bambar Children’s Care Center for all you are doing for the tender-aged citizens of tomorrow who come to you. May Heaven bless you to carry on and touch many more lives.
Wonderful viewers, thank you for your company on today’s program. Coming up next is Words of Wisdom, after Noteworthy News, on Supreme Master Television. Wishing you love and joy in every moment of your precious life.