Gomen Wat: Ethiopian Spiced Collards

January 23, 2014
0 Ratings
  • Serves 2, generously
Author Notes

I developed this Gomen Wat as a way to recreate my favorite dish from a Richmond, VA restaurant called The Nile. Ethiopian and family owned, their vegetarian platters are deeply spiced, gorgeous examples of elevating the food of poverty into the stuff of royalty. As a long time vegetarian and Southerner, these collards -- deeply spiced with aromatic paprika, toasted allspice, cardamom, and cumin -- satisfy my craving for dark leafies. From my blog Will Frolic for Food (blog). —RENEE

What You'll Need
  • 3 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon black cardamom seeds
  • 1 tablespoon ground allspice
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 2 pounds collards, stemmed and chopped into long strips
  • 1 tablespoon ground clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/4 cup rose or white wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a medium pot, dry toast cardamom, allspice, and cumin for 2 minutes over low heat. Add ghee and fry 2 minutes more.
  2. Add onion and garlic, cooking until soft and slightly translucent.
  3. Add collards, clove, paprika, cayenne, and water and cook 40-55 minutes over medium heat, until most of the water has evaporated and the collards are completely soft.
  4. Top with vinegar, salt and pepper to taste, and serve hot. Enjoy!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Shelley Palmer
    Shelley Palmer
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2 Reviews

none May 16, 2020
The only reason I signed up is to express my sadness when I saw your description of the Gomen as, " a food of poverty". It is true part of Ethiopia had experienced drought and starvation but our food should not be described as poverty. Our food culture is rich with tradition and can be compared to any country's food. If you enjoy eating Ethiopian food, start with respect to the culinary of the country.
Shelley P. November 27, 2014
I love Nile! They merged with Portrait House this past summer. Sadly, I moved away in August and have had a major craving for this dish recently! Thanks for posting the recipe.