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Dabo - Ethiopian Bread

Dabo ethiopian bread Tsion Cafe

Simple to prepare, traditionally served in the Ethiopian Jewish community for Shabbat and celebrations.  The delicious smell of this bread connects me to my childhood when I grew up in the Tigray Region of northern Ethiopia until I was 5 years old. 

We ate this bread on Shabbat along with Doro Wat, a traditional stew. 

  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 1 loafServings


  • 1 to 1 ¼ cups warm water, divided
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons (1 packet) dry yeast
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt 
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 egg


1. Place ½ cup of warm water into a small bowl, add the yeast and stir. Set aside for 20 minutes until the mixture foams up.

2. Mix the flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Add the yeast mixture, oil, and egg to the dry ingredients and mix well with a spatula. Gradually add ½ cup of warm water to the dough, and knead the dough by hand until it is combined, smooth, and soft, about 3 minutes. If needed to bring the dough together, add up to ¼ cup more water. Knead for about 6 minutes more, until the dough springs back on itself after poking it with your finger.

3. Apply ½ teaspoon of oil to your hands, and shape the dough into a loose ball.

4. Place the dough into a large bowl and cover it with a towel. Set aside and allow the dough to rise for 1 hour. Knead the dough again by hand for just a moment to release any excess air. Transfer the dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Put a towel on top of the dough and let it rise for another 40 minutes or until doubled in size.

5. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

6. Transfer the baking sheet with the proofed dough into the oven and bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until the dough is golden brown and the bread sounds hollow when tapping on it.

7. Let the dabo cool for 15 to 20 minutes on the baking sheet and serve at room temperature.