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Sunday, March 3, 2013

After 5 years of documenting the Sidama tribe’s food ways, Donna Sillan, MPH has completed the first “Sidama Cookbook” ever written to capture the traditional art of this ancient and unique cuisine.  It is an anthropological document to preserve the dying art of enset, the staple of the Sidama.  She spent time planting, processing and preparing enset in Ethiopia before attempted to capture what has only been transmitted orally to date and is on the verge of extinction.
Sidama Sustenance
A blurb from Donna on her shocking process
Sidama food takes the prize for being the most complicated, intricate, ancient food processed on the planet.   What strikes me as most amazing is the fact that an ancient people discovered “enset” and found out how to make it edible and determine its utility as a staple.  How did they figure it out hundreds of years ago?
I wrote this book for two reasons. First of all, I admit, I’m obsessed with food and particularly exotic, ethnic food.   It is no wonder that I spent the last 30 years as an international public health practitioner specializing in nutrition.  It was by design.  I have cooked with developing world women in huts and under trees, balancing pots on three stones in over 35 countries, through my nutrition work with NGOs. I am particularly interested in the diets, food ways and the cultural meaning of foods.  Tell me what a people eats and I will understand them more.  We are what we eat.  Secondly, I wanted to preserve this ancient art for the tribe.  It had not be recorded in history and needed to be written down for posterity before it is forgotten.

On the first day of entering Aleta Wondo in 2007, my interest was immediately piqued by the intriguing unique staple food of the Sidama called “enset.”  I started talking with the Sidama about their diet, their foodways, their nutrition, the availability of their foods, and their cooking practices. I started eating their staple “kocho”, photographing it, and preparing it. I wanted to learn how to cook enset myself.  That was easier said than done.  It is an incredibly complicated process.   Every time I asked how it was done, I was caught in the middle of long string of events which had missing pieces from the beginning or the end in the sequence.  I was completely frustrated and confused.  Then, I became disappointed.  It wasn’t as presentable as the national staple, injera.  Kocho (the edible end product of enset) looked like a pile of sand.  Meanwhile, enset, aka “false banana” in the fields is sexy gorgeous!  It has wide, fluorescent green leaves with thick, soft fleshed trunks of different colors.  There was such a contrast from field to table in terms of presentation.  The processing of this beautiful plant turned it into an unattractive pile of brown sand.   Why, how, what for?
I decided to tackle the mystery of this particular food by writing a grant to get funding to compile a “cookbook” on enset.  Christensen Fund funded the proposal.  Upon undergoing the process of learning about enset, I underwent my own personal process.  I had drawn my own hypothesis and had drawn my own conclusion.  I was prepared to propose to the tribe to find a new staple food and start over to develop a more friendly food crop. My American point of view shaped my initial hypothesis which was:
  • Nutritionally it was lousy, with hardly any value (like all staples).
  • Cuisine-wise, it looks like sand and feels like you are eating sand.
  • Culturally, it was oppressive to women.  It takes an unusual amount of back-breaking work to produce, which creates a calorie deficit rather than provide a positive energy food source.
  • Environmentally, I was sure it depleted the soil and required too much water.
I think I am the only American who actually likes the taste of kocho.  But I have unusual tastes given my exposure to different foods through my work with traditional cultures. It has a pungent odor from the fermentation process.   In spite of the fact, that I actually didn’t mind consuming it, I was sad that I would be writing a “downer” of a book.
Confused by what women told me, I started by asking children to explain enset to me in their own innocent terms, but they were not interested in it. They understood where it came from but they were quickly losing interest in the 7 year process of growing enset and the labor it entailed to make it edible.   This frightened me.  I was thus further compelled to document the recipes of the tribe, given their cuisine was on the verge of extinction and only transmitted orally. I was afraid that this very ancient cuisine would be forgotten and lost, without any trace of its existence on our planet.  This peculiar staple would go unrecorded before its disappearance.  And it is quickly getting taken over by the national staple injera of the Amhara tribe, through cultural hegemony.
The Sidama tribe can be called part of an “enset culture” in southern Ethiopia.  Enset is exceptionally labor intensive staple food.  I warn Americans who look to the book as a cookbook …”Do Not Try This at Home.”  Basically, the ingredients are not available in this country.  Beyond that critical fact, the stamina it takes to produce enset is far too great for an average American.   You think working out in a gym 5 days a week is hard.  Try providing enset daily to your family in Ethiopia.  No gym necessary. They work tirelessly day in and day out just to provide this staple on their table.  We don’t have the amount of time it takes to prepare, as we value convenience.   And most of us don’t have the muscle to prepare enset, which takes strenuous, back-breaking work.  Americans want things that take the least energy and are fast and easy.
When I asked women; the grannies, the mothers, and the traditional cooks, about their opinion of enset, they unanimously said “This is our gold.”  I couldn’t believe it!   How could one enjoy this laborious, long process?  They told me about their “special power,” exclusive only to those who know the secret of enset.   It is strictly a women’s domain and men are not allowed to enter this inner sanctum.  Men cultivate the trees and that is the end.  Only women can scrape the trunk, and process it.  Men can’t even WATCH the women doing this, since they raise their leg and place it on the trunk, revealing a bare thigh and calf deep in the recesses of the forest.
Women then help each other in a communal fashion, basically forming an informal women’s support group.  They rotate through the neighborhood and help each other process their crop.  It is a time for gossip, reflection, song and dance.  Once the process is completed, each woman has a special knowledge or “potent” in how she prepares it so that it is uniquely hers.   A woman is judged by the taste of her kocho.  If it is not tasty, she will not be married (not always bad thing).  A woman has her own dominance in this arena and it is her “concoction,” which is expressed solely without a man breathing down her neck.  She is her own artisan and appreciated for it.
Another empowering aspect of enset , in contrast to coffee, is that it is the only product that women can sell in the market and keep the change.  When they prepare enough in excess, after feeding their family, they can sell it in the market, and do whatever they like with the proceeds. It is her own “stash” or security pouch.
There are many aspects of the enset tree, which make it environmentally a winner:
  • It provides shade to other crops, so inter-cropping is a sustainable agricultural practice aiding other crops.
  • It collects water within its own architecture of wide leaves, so it doesn’t take much water.
  • It prevents erosion and holds soil on hillsides.
  • The plant can grow continually at different stages of development, so that there is always a crop ready to eat depending on the age of the tree.   It can provide a family food year-round.
At the end of my research, I invited 5 of the best traditional cooks (my informants) to come for a full day of reviewing the entire process.  We started in the forest, moved to the fields, and then took some “ready” enset into the kitchen.  We squeezed and kneaded and cut and removed the fibers from the enset for hours.  Then we cooked it into kocho, adding fresh butter and feasted on it.  I gave them many thanks and suddenly the hut started to shake with energy.  They broke into DANCE and sang for joy.  We danced and danced for hours, so happy to have their art valued and appreciated.
So what does it take to process enset into kocho?
  1. Cut down a big false banana tree after it is 7 years old
  2. Scrape the trunk  of its fibrous, wet inner flesh
  3. Dig a hole in the ground and line it with its leave and put the scrapings in it
  4. Add a starter from the core root of the tree and cover it with leaves
  5. Let it ferment for 3 months, with lots of checking and churning
  6. Take it out and wrap it in big enset leaves into 35 pound rounds
  7. Cut it, knead it, remove the fibers in the kitchen
  8. Shift it to death until it forms a flour like texture
  9. Pan-fry it over a fire
  10. Mix it with butter or beans or salt or nothing
  11. EAT it with your hands or an enset leaf
Relieved that I was absolutely wrong in my judgment, I came 180 degrees around to conclude that enset is a miracle crop and one that should be promoted, propagated and planted throughout Ethiopia!  So what I have written is actually a surprisingly passionate endorsement of enset.   Being a positive person, I was relieved that in fact, I could write an “upper” of a book.  My initial hesitancy about the utility of this food staple was gone.  I had shifted by the end of my research to find enset to be a profoundly environmentally sound and beneficial food crop.
Experiencing this epiphany was one big lesson in humility. I learned about my own American bias and prejudices.  I held preconceptions, which I projected onto the surface of the cuisine and judged it unfairly, without reflecting deeper and understanding it in its wholeness.
The book is more of an anthropological record rather than a “cookbook.”  It will eventually be translated into the local Sidama language, although 90% of the tribe is illiterate. Oh well, I got it off my chest and have written it down.  I discuss many issues surrounding nutrition, culture, women and environmental sustainability.  And I finally understand the process.  My original distaste has turned into an utter love and appreciation for this ancient crop.
When the book was published, Tsegaye brought the first copy to Common River and shared it with my female resources. He said they hugged the book to their chest and called it “their Bible.”  They had never seen their food presented on paper, in color photos, bound in a book, much less ever heard of a cookbook.   They felt honored that someone outside of their culture had seen the gold in the mainstay of their life.
It is true that enset is not just a staple food.  Rather it is a way of life, upon which their culture revolves.  It not only feeds them physically, but mentally and spiritually as well.  We can’t say that about American food, especially now as a “fast food nation.”   Sidama cuisine is definitely a SLOW FOOD, which nourishes the lives of the Sidama, not only their bodies but in their minds and souls.  It is friendly to the earth, which is another reason to love it.  And now, to me it tastes even better when I grab a handful and eat it.
Jan. 2013 Donna Sillan
http://commonriver.wordpress.com/2013/02/24/the-surprising-process-of-sidama-cuisine/

Pourquoi Pas coffee shop owners Tony Tanchaleune, left, and Tyler Mastantuono. The café is one of Montreal’s growing number of Third Wave coffee shops.

Photograph by: Allen McInnis , The Gazette

The name of the café was Pourquoi Pas Espresso Bar, and so briefly did I plan to visit that I double-parked my car on top of an Amherst St. slush bank. I was only going in to buy some coffee. Or so I thought …
I nodded to the two hipster baristas working the counter and admired the mason jars filled with coffee, trying to decide whether this week’s beans would be from Honduras, Ethopia, Kenya, El Salvador or Guatemala. I flipped the tags on the coffee jars and noticed the producer, roasting procedure and altitude at which the coffee was grown were listed alongside the specific code for the variety and the roasting date. We’re miles from a can of Maxwell House here. No doubt about it, Pourquoi Pas is one of the city’s growing number of Third Wave coffee shops.
A term coined in 2002 by Los Angeles food writer Jonathan Gold, Third Wave coffee can best be described as follows: The first wave of coffee in North America was the mass-produced brands — think Folgers — that purchased beans as a commodity (like wheat) and sold them (usually ground) in supermarkets. The second wave was the chain coffee shops like Starbucks and Second Cup that specialized in a line of coffee beverages with negligible attention paid to the origin of the beans. The Third Wave refers to small-scale coffee roasters who treat coffee as an artisanal foodstuff that reflects its “terroir” (place where it is grown). Coffees are sourced directly from a specific area or farm. Relationships with coffee farmers are commonplace. Montreal’s Camellia Senensis, known for direct-sourcing its world-class teas, and Geneviève Grandbois, who fabricates bean-to-bar chocolate from her very own cocoa plantation in Costa Rica, share this ideology.
The best analogy for Third Wave coffee beans would be grapes for winemaking, as their transformers share the belief that the climate and area in which the coffee or grape is grown has a huge effect on the taste of the final product. The ultimate goal is to extract the purest reflection of the bean from its “journey” from bush to cup, and relish the specific flavours each has to offer.
But the Third Wave philosophy doesn’t end there. Microroasting (in small batches) to enhance rather than obliterate flavours is key, as is freshness. Beans roasted as far away as Portland, Ore., and Seattle, Wash., and even exotic locations such as Calgary and Toronto, are shipped weekly. Though many Third Wave coffee houses, such as Montreal’s Café St-Henri, source and roast their own beans, most Third Wave-style cafés purchase their coffees from Third Wave coffee roasters in Canada and the U.S. And when said coffee is brewed in-house (most Third Wave coffee roasters operate retail cafés), it’s prepared following the most meticulous brewing methods.
Third Wave coffee shops focus primarily on three kinds of coffee: espresso, siphon and filter. To Third Wave baristas, a latte isn’t a coffee, it’s a beverage. Having more or less given up on pulling a killer espresso shot at home, and having neither the time, patience or fancy equipment to brew siphon coffee on a whim, I’ve turned my attentions to mastering the perfect cup of filter (a.k.a. “pourover”) coffee.
I never knew filtered coffee could be magnificent until I tasted some made by Café Myriade’s co-owner and chief barista, Anthony Benda. Using some pretty swish beans from the Calgary-based Phil & Sebastien coffee roasters, Benda made coffee that tasted of red fruit and chocolate. Chocolate and fruit? Yes!
On the website of Pilot Coffee roasters in Toronto (the roasters that sell to Pourquoi Pas), the write-up on their Ethiopia Sidama Natural coffee includes such descriptors as:
“There are unmissable, intense, over-the-top aromas of blueberry and apricot that linger and envelop your palate as you drink. The syrupy body moderates the acidity and perfectly complements the sweet fruitiness and chocolate that carries all the way into the finish and long after. This is a coffee you could have for breakfast with a heaping pile of blueberry buttermilk pancakes; you could almost use it in place of maple syrup it is so sweet.”
Further proof to the close-to-fanatical attention paid to coffee during harvesting and processing even before it hits the roaster is summed up in these sentences (in which the coffee is referred to as cherries when it’s in its fruit “berry” stage):
“Only the ripest cherries were handpicked and then they were put on raised beds to dry the same day. They were then moved every two hours to ensure even drying for the next 15-17 days. After hulling and just prior to export they are subject to extra sorting to further increase quality.”
This isn’t just coffee making, this is religion!
So back to me at Pourquoi Pas with the car double-parked and the intention to pick up some coffee. Tyler, the wool bonnet-sporting barista who served me, was kind enough to point me to the beans best suited to filter coffee. So just as I was about to hand over my $17 (this coffee is marvellous, but it sure ain’t cheap), I thought that maybe my pourover method could use some fine-tuning. Tyler asked a few questions: Was I grinding my coffee at home (essential)? Did I have a scale to weigh the ideal amount of coffee per cup (15g)? Did I have a goose neck kettle to allow me to pour the water over the grinds evenly (no, and I sure wasn’t forking over for a new one)? And, finally, he asked: “Are you using bleached or unbleached filters?” Aha! This one I was doing right. I was using those unbleached environment-friendly filters. Score! Not so, said Tyler, as the unbleached filters make the coffee taste like a brown paper bag. What I needed was the Japanese oxygen-whitened filters that impart no added flavour. They’re a bit more expensive, but as I’m spending a pretty penny on the coffee already, what’s the diff?
In the end, I stocked up on some primo beans, which I now buy weekly to assure freshness, and unearthed my grinder from my small-appliance graveyard. I’ve kept my Breville kettle, and I use an old basket filter lined with my tasteless white Japanese paper filters to make my coffee.
I measure the recommended 15g of coffee beans per cup, I grind the beans immediately before brewing and I rinse the filter with boiling water before adding the grinds, which is done to wash away any bits of dust, fluff or non-coffee-compatible debris that may have snuck in somewhere between Tokyo and Montreal. I boil the filtered water and let it sit for 20 seconds, and then I pour enough water over the grains until they are just saturated. I wait about 40 seconds longer, then begin the second pour, gradually adding water to the “bed” of the grinds (that’s barista talk) all the while avoiding the edges.
I could be even more of a stickler if I were a die-hard aficionado, but, truth be told, I’m pretty groggy when I’m going through this ritual in the morning, so some days I — gasp! — forget to rinse the filter (somewhere in Portland, Ore., a barista flubbed an espresso shot thinking of that).
So, all taken, is this whole coffee rigmarole worth it? Yes! Third Wave coffee has less torque and greater aromatics, a definite sweetness and real complexity. Think berries (especially blueberries), currants, chocolate, lemon, toffee, peach with a nice hit of that great flavour booster, acidity. And as for the “creamy body” often mentioned in the adjective-heavy Third Wave coffee literature, uh-huh, I’m on board with that, too.
In the end, my time with Tyler (and so many of this city’s passionate baristas) provided an essential coffee education. I recently splurged on a new grinder (the coffee-hipster-approved Baratza Encore, about $150), I’ve braved snowstorms to get my coffee and I’m even considering that goose-necked kettle to improve my pour.
My next goal? To determine whether to diminish or increase my grind size to get my brew time below the requisite three-minute mark.
Yeah, okay, I’m obsessed.
Below, you’ll find a list of some of my favourite of the city’s Third Wave-style coffee houses, where you can buy coffee beans or simply enjoy your favourite coffee or coffee “beverage” (a.k.a. latte) on site. Some also sell coffee-making paraphernalia. Take note: only Saint-Henri roasts on the premises. As for favourite coffee brands, I’m a big fan of beans by Saint-Henri (Montreal), 49th Parallel (Vancouver), Phil & Sebastien (Calgary), Pilot (Toronto), Metropolis and Intelligentsia (both Chicago). As there are new brands constantly hitting the market and baristas tend to be a fickle bunch, even with their favourite brands, according to particular “roasting profiles” employed, ask your barista about his or her preference for your type of coffee, filter, espresso, etc.
- See more at: http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/food-wine/Critic+Notebook+Third+Wave+caf%C3%A9s+take+coffee+heights/7972772/story.html#sthash.06NKEyvE.dpufhttp://www.montrealgazette.com/life/food-wine/Critic+Notebook+Third+Wave+caf%C3%A9s+take+coffee+heights/7972772/story.html

Pourquoi Pas coffee shop owners Tony Tanchaleune, left, and Tyler Mastantuono. The café is one of Montreal’s growing number of Third Wave coffee shops.

Photograph by: Allen McInnis , The Gazette

The name of the café was Pourquoi Pas Espresso Bar, and so briefly did I plan to visit that I double-parked my car on top of an Amherst St. slush bank. I was only going in to buy some coffee. Or so I thought …
I nodded to the two hipster baristas working the counter and admired the mason jars filled with coffee, trying to decide whether this week’s beans would be from Honduras, Ethopia, Kenya, El Salvador or Guatemala. I flipped the tags on the coffee jars and noticed the producer, roasting procedure and altitude at which the coffee was grown were listed alongside the specific code for the variety and the roasting date. We’re miles from a can of Maxwell House here. No doubt about it, Pourquoi Pas is one of the city’s growing number of Third Wave coffee shops.
A term coined in 2002 by Los Angeles food writer Jonathan Gold, Third Wave coffee can best be described as follows: The first wave of coffee in North America was the mass-produced brands — think Folgers — that purchased beans as a commodity (like wheat) and sold them (usually ground) in supermarkets. The second wave was the chain coffee shops like Starbucks and Second Cup that specialized in a line of coffee beverages with negligible attention paid to the origin of the beans. The Third Wave refers to small-scale coffee roasters who treat coffee as an artisanal foodstuff that reflects its “terroir” (place where it is grown). Coffees are sourced directly from a specific area or farm. Relationships with coffee farmers are commonplace. Montreal’s Camellia Senensis, known for direct-sourcing its world-class teas, and Geneviève Grandbois, who fabricates bean-to-bar chocolate from her very own cocoa plantation in Costa Rica, share this ideology.
The best analogy for Third Wave coffee beans would be grapes for winemaking, as their transformers share the belief that the climate and area in which the coffee or grape is grown has a huge effect on the taste of the final product. The ultimate goal is to extract the purest reflection of the bean from its “journey” from bush to cup, and relish the specific flavours each has to offer.
But the Third Wave philosophy doesn’t end there. Microroasting (in small batches) to enhance rather than obliterate flavours is key, as is freshness. Beans roasted as far away as Portland, Ore., and Seattle, Wash., and even exotic locations such as Calgary and Toronto, are shipped weekly. Though many Third Wave coffee houses, such as Montreal’s Café St-Henri, source and roast their own beans, most Third Wave-style cafés purchase their coffees from Third Wave coffee roasters in Canada and the U.S. And when said coffee is brewed in-house (most Third Wave coffee roasters operate retail cafés), it’s prepared following the most meticulous brewing methods.
Third Wave coffee shops focus primarily on three kinds of coffee: espresso, siphon and filter. To Third Wave baristas, a latte isn’t a coffee, it’s a beverage. Having more or less given up on pulling a killer espresso shot at home, and having neither the time, patience or fancy equipment to brew siphon coffee on a whim, I’ve turned my attentions to mastering the perfect cup of filter (a.k.a. “pourover”) coffee.
I never knew filtered coffee could be magnificent until I tasted some made by Café Myriade’s co-owner and chief barista, Anthony Benda. Using some pretty swish beans from the Calgary-based Phil & Sebastien coffee roasters, Benda made coffee that tasted of red fruit and chocolate. Chocolate and fruit? Yes!
On the website of Pilot Coffee roasters in Toronto (the roasters that sell to Pourquoi Pas), the write-up on their Ethiopia Sidama Natural coffee includes such descriptors as:
“There are unmissable, intense, over-the-top aromas of blueberry and apricot that linger and envelop your palate as you drink. The syrupy body moderates the acidity and perfectly complements the sweet fruitiness and chocolate that carries all the way into the finish and long after. This is a coffee you could have for breakfast with a heaping pile of blueberry buttermilk pancakes; you could almost use it in place of maple syrup it is so sweet.”
Further proof to the close-to-fanatical attention paid to coffee during harvesting and processing even before it hits the roaster is summed up in these sentences (in which the coffee is referred to as cherries when it’s in its fruit “berry” stage):
“Only the ripest cherries were handpicked and then they were put on raised beds to dry the same day. They were then moved every two hours to ensure even drying for the next 15-17 days. After hulling and just prior to export they are subject to extra sorting to further increase quality.”
This isn’t just coffee making, this is religion!
So back to me at Pourquoi Pas with the car double-parked and the intention to pick up some coffee. Tyler, the wool bonnet-sporting barista who served me, was kind enough to point me to the beans best suited to filter coffee. So just as I was about to hand over my $17 (this coffee is marvellous, but it sure ain’t cheap), I thought that maybe my pourover method could use some fine-tuning. Tyler asked a few questions: Was I grinding my coffee at home (essential)? Did I have a scale to weigh the ideal amount of coffee per cup (15g)? Did I have a goose neck kettle to allow me to pour the water over the grinds evenly (no, and I sure wasn’t forking over for a new one)? And, finally, he asked: “Are you using bleached or unbleached filters?” Aha! This one I was doing right. I was using those unbleached environment-friendly filters. Score! Not so, said Tyler, as the unbleached filters make the coffee taste like a brown paper bag. What I needed was the Japanese oxygen-whitened filters that impart no added flavour. They’re a bit more expensive, but as I’m spending a pretty penny on the coffee already, what’s the diff?
In the end, I stocked up on some primo beans, which I now buy weekly to assure freshness, and unearthed my grinder from my small-appliance graveyard. I’ve kept my Breville kettle, and I use an old basket filter lined with my tasteless white Japanese paper filters to make my coffee.
I measure the recommended 15g of coffee beans per cup, I grind the beans immediately before brewing and I rinse the filter with boiling water before adding the grinds, which is done to wash away any bits of dust, fluff or non-coffee-compatible debris that may have snuck in somewhere between Tokyo and Montreal. I boil the filtered water and let it sit for 20 seconds, and then I pour enough water over the grains until they are just saturated. I wait about 40 seconds longer, then begin the second pour, gradually adding water to the “bed” of the grinds (that’s barista talk) all the while avoiding the edges.
I could be even more of a stickler if I were a die-hard aficionado, but, truth be told, I’m pretty groggy when I’m going through this ritual in the morning, so some days I — gasp! — forget to rinse the filter (somewhere in Portland, Ore., a barista flubbed an espresso shot thinking of that).
So, all taken, is this whole coffee rigmarole worth it? Yes! Third Wave coffee has less torque and greater aromatics, a definite sweetness and real complexity. Think berries (especially blueberries), currants, chocolate, lemon, toffee, peach with a nice hit of that great flavour booster, acidity. And as for the “creamy body” often mentioned in the adjective-heavy Third Wave coffee literature, uh-huh, I’m on board with that, too.
In the end, my time with Tyler (and so many of this city’s passionate baristas) provided an essential coffee education. I recently splurged on a new grinder (the coffee-hipster-approved Baratza Encore, about $150), I’ve braved snowstorms to get my coffee and I’m even considering that goose-necked kettle to improve my pour.
My next goal? To determine whether to diminish or increase my grind size to get my brew time below the requisite three-minute mark.
Yeah, okay, I’m obsessed.
Below, you’ll find a list of some of my favourite of the city’s Third Wave-style coffee houses, where you can buy coffee beans or simply enjoy your favourite coffee or coffee “beverage” (a.k.a. latte) on site. Some also sell coffee-making paraphernalia. Take note: only Saint-Henri roasts on the premises. As for favourite coffee brands, I’m a big fan of beans by Saint-Henri (Montreal), 49th Parallel (Vancouver), Phil & Sebastien (Calgary), Pilot (Toronto), Metropolis and Intelligentsia (both Chicago). As there are new brands constantly hitting the market and baristas tend to be a fickle bunch, even with their favourite brands, according to particular “roasting profiles” employed, ask your barista about his or her preference for your type of coffee, filter, espresso, etc.
- See more at: http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/food-wine/Critic+Notebook+Third+Wave+caf%C3%A9s+take+coffee+heights/7972772/story.html#sthash.06NKEyvE.dpufOn the website of Pilot Coffee roasters in Toronto (the roasters that sell to Pourquoi Pas), the write-up on their Ethiopia Sidama Natural coffee includes such descriptors as:
“There are unmissable, intense, over-the-top aromas of blueberry and apricot that linger and envelop your palate as you drink. The syrupy body moderates the acidity and perfectly complements the sweet fruitiness and chocolate that carries all the way into the finish and long after. This is a coffee you could have for breakfast with a heaping pile of blueberry buttermilk pancakes; you could almost use it in place of maple syrup it is so sweet.”
- See more at: http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/food-wine/Critic+Notebook+Third+Wave+caf%C3%A9s+take+coffee+heights/7972772/story.html#sthash.06NKEyvE.dpuf

የመብራት ኀይል “ትራንስፎርመር” ተቃጠለ (ትራንስፎርሜሽኑስ?)
ቴሌኮም “ሲምካርድ ከእኔ፤ ኔትዎርክ ከእናንተ” ቢለን ይሻላል
ምርጫ ቦርድ “ምርጫው እንጂ ምህዳሩ አያገባኝም” ብሏል
ከእንቅልፌ የቀሰቀሰኝ የሞባይሌ ቴክስት ሜሴጅ (SMS) ድምፅ ነው፡፡ በጣም ተናደድኩኝ፡፡ ሰዓቱ እኮ ገና አንድ ሰዓት አልሆነም፡፡ ቀን ቀን በኔትዎርክ መጨናነቅ ከአገልግሎት ክልል ውጭ የሚሆነው ሞባይሌ በዚህ ሌሊት እንዴት ይረብሸኛል? ይሄኔ እኮ የራሱ የቴሌኮም ማስታወቂያ ይሆናል… ብዬ አሰብኩ፡፡ “የ100 ብር ካርድ ስትሞሉ 15 ደቂቃ ነፃ የአየር ሰዓት ታገኛላችሁ” የሚለው አይነት ማለቴ ነው (ፅድቁ ቀርቶብኝ በቅጡ በኮነነኝ!) ሌላ ሌላው ማትጊያ ቀርቶብን ኔትዎርክ ብናገኝ እኮ ይበቃን ነበር፡፡ አሊያም ደግሞ ሃቁን በይፋ ቢነግረን ቁርጣችንን እናውቀዋለን፡፡ “አያችሁ ከዛሬ ጀምሮ የኔትዎርክ ጉዳይ አይመለከተኝም፤ ሲም ካርድ ከእኔ፤ ኔትዎርክ ከናንተ” ቢለን እኮ አርፈን እንቀመጣለን፡፡ ወይም ኔትዎርክ ከቻይና እናፈላልጋለን ፡፡
ባለፈው ሳምንት በኢቴቪ በቀረበ የፓናል ውይይት ላይ የመብራት ሃይል ኮርፖሬሽንና የቴሌኮም ተወካዮች ከነዋሪዎች ለቀረቡላቸው ጥያቄዎችና ቅሬታዎች አጥጋቢ መልስ አጥተው ሲጨናነቁ አይቼ አፈርኩም አዘንኩም፡፡ አንድ አስተያየት ሰጪ ምን አሉ መሰላችሁ? “ለምን አልቻልንም ፤ ከአቅማችን በላይ ነው ብላችሁ እውነቱን አትነግሩንም? ስንት ዘመን ነው ይሄንን እየሰራን ነው… ያንን እያደረግን ነው የምትሉት!” ሲሉ አፋጠጧቸው፡፡ በነገራችሁ ላይ እቺ አባባል ለእነ ቴሌኮም ብቻ ሳይሆን ለእነኢህአዴግም ትሰራለች፡፡ አዎ አንዳንዴ እኮ ማመን አለባቸው (ስንት ዘመን በሽወዳ!) እናላችሁ --- እነኢህአዴግና ሌሎችም ሲያቅታቸው “አልቻልንም! ከአቅማችን በላይ ነው” ቢሉን ትልቅ ውለታ ነው (የሚችል እንፈልጋለና!)
ኢህአዴግ ለምሳሌ “አልቻልኩም! ከአቅሜ በላይ ነው!” ማለት እየፈራ (እያፈረ ይሆን እንዴ!) ስንቱን ነገር ሞከረብን (ላብራቶሪ እኮ አይደለንም!) አሁን በቅርቡ እንኳን BPR ዒላማውን አልመታም ተብሎ የዜጐች ቻርተር የሚባል ነገር ተጀምሮ ነበር (እሱን ያስተዋወቁን ከፍተኛ ባለሥልጣን ግን የት ገቡ?) ከዚያስ? የእሱን ውጤት ሳናውቅ “ካይዘን” የሚባል የጣልያን መኪና ስም የመሰለ ነገር መምጣቱን ሰማን፡፡ ካይዘንን ጠግበን ሳንጨርስ ሰሞኑን ደግሞ “Quick fix” (ለብለብ ብየዋለሁ) የሚባል ነገር መጥቶብናል (መቼም መጥቶልናል አይባል!) ይሄ እንኳን ራሱ ስሙም ዕድሜው አጭር እንደሆነ ይጠቁማል - “Quick fix” ይላላ! ችግሮችን ለጊዜው በጥድፍያ የሚፈታ እንጂ ዘላቂ አይደለም፡፡ አንዳንድ የፖለቲካ ተንታኞች ምን ይሉታል መሰላችሁ? “የምርጫ ጊዜ መፍትሔ” ለዚህ እኮ ነው የመንግስት አገልግሎት ሰጪ ተቋማት (እንደመብራት ሃይል ያሉት ማለቴ ነው) ሰሞኑን ይሄን ቃል ደጋግመው ሲጠሩት የምንሰማው፡፡
የኢህአዴግ ቱባ ቱባ አመራሮችማ ከ“Quick fix” ጋር ፍቅር የያዛቸው ነው የሚመስሉት፡፡ (ማን ይሆን የዚህ ነጠላ አልበም ደራሲና አቀንቃኝ) እኔ በበኩሌ ግን ተመችቶኛል፡፡ (ስሙን ማለቴ ነው!) ለዚህ እኮ ነው “የሚያዝያው ምርጫ ነጠላ አልበም” ያልኩት፡፡
ብዙ ሳመነታ ቆይቼ በማለዳ የተላከልኝን ቴክስት ልመለከት ሞባይሌን ከኮሜዲኖው ላይ አነሳሁት፡፡ የሻማ እንጥብጣቢ ተለጥፎበታል፡፡ ለካስ ትላንትናና ከትላንት ወዲያ የኛ ሰፈር “ከመብራት አገልግሎት ውጭ” ነበር፡፡ ይታያችሁ --- ሁለት ቀን ሙሉ ኤሌክትሪክ የለም፡፡ በእርግጥ መብራት ሃይሎች በኢቴቪ ከቀረበው የፓናል ውይይት በኋላ ተነስቶ የማያውቅ ስልካቸውን ማንሳት እንደጀመሩ አከራዬ እንደትልቅ ድል አብስረውኛል፡፡ ስልክ ማንሳት ማለት ግን መብራት ይመጣል ማለት አይደለም፡፡
የመብራቱ ነገር በአዲሱ ፈጣን የችግር አፈታት ዘዴም “Quick fix” ሊፈታ እንዳልቻለ ከውስጥ አዋቂ ምንጮች ሰምቻለሁ፡፡ የመብራት ሃይል ችግር ምንድነው ብዬ ሳጠያይቅ ምን ተባለ መሰላችሁ? የትራንስፎርመር መቃጠል! እኔን ያሳሰበኝ ግን ይሄ አይደለም፡፡ የትራንስፎርመር መቃጠል “ትራንስፎርሜሽኑ” ላይ የሚያሳድረው ተጽእኖ ነው ስጋት የሆነብኝ፡፡ የእድገትና ትራንስፎርሜሽን እቅዱ ከተቃጠለ እኮ ለየልን ማለት ነው፡፡ ሻማ በማብራት አናልፈውማ (ሻማውስ ሲገኝ አይደል!) እኔ የምለው ---- መብራት ሃይል ምን እያሰበ ይሆን? ለነገሩ የእውነት ዕቅዱን ቢጠየቅ ምን እንደሚል ታውቃላችሁ? “በአጭር ጊዜ ውስጥ የኤሌክትሪክ ኃይል ለጐረቤት አገራት ለመሸጥ አስበናል” (የእኛን አጥፍቶ የጐረቤት ሊያበራ!)
ብዙም ሳልጓጓ በሞባይሌ የተላከልኝን ቴክስት ሜሴጅ ማንበብ ጀመርኩ፡፡ አንድ ወዳጄ ነው የላከልኝ፡፡ እንዲህ ይላል -
ቴሌ - ኔትዎርክ የለም!
ኤልፓ - መብራት የለም!
ውሃና ፍሳሽ - ውሃ የለም!
ፓርላማ - ተቃዋሚ የለም!
ባንክ - ዶላር የለም!
ኢትዮጵያ - ኑሮ የለም!
በጠዋት ጨለምተኛ መልዕክት አነበብኩ - ያውም በባዶ ሆዴ! እኔ ደግሞ ከቴክስቱ መጨረሻ እንዲህ የሚል የግል እሮሮ ጨመርኩበት -
እኔ ቤት - እንቅልፍ የለም!
አይገርምም--- ወዲያው ደግሞ በሬ ተንኳኳ - ቴክስቱን የላከልኝ ወዳጄ ነው የመጣው፡፡ እንቅልፍ የማጣው በቴሌ በሚላከው ቴክስት ሜሴጅ ብቻ እንዳይመስላችሁ፡፡ የኑሮና የገቢ አለመመጣጠኑም ራሱ እንቅልፍ ይነሳል፡፡ ይታያችሁ----እኔ ደሞዝ የተጨመረልኝ የዛሬ ሦስት ዓመት ነው፡፡ የኑሮ ግሽበቱ ግን በሦስት እጥፍ ጨምሯል፡፡ ሌላው ቀርቶ አከራዬ ራሳቸው መስከረም ከጠባ ሶስቴ የቤት ኪራይ ጨምረውብኛል፡፡ ታዲያ እንዴት እንቅልፍ ይውሰደኝ ? በዚያ ላይ አንዳንድ የአገር ጉዳዮች አሉ- ከዚህ እኩል እንቅልፍ የሚነሱ፡፡ ሁሌም ወዳጄ ሲመጣ ቤቴ የፖለቲካ ፓርቲዎች ቢሮ ትመስላለች (የሃብታሞቹ ሳይሆን የምስኪኖቹ! ) በቃ ወሬያችን ሁሉ ፖለቲካ ይሆናል፡፡ በእርግጥ አንዳንዱ ደረቅ ሃቅ ነው (እንደዋጋ ግሽበቱ!) አንዳንዱ መሬት ያረገጠ ፍርሃትና ስጋት (ነፋስ አመጣሽ እንደሚሉት!) ጥቂቱ ደግሞ ምኞት ነው (ተስፋ ያላጀበው!) የሚበዛው ግን ሃሜት! (እውነትና ውሸት የተደባለቁበት!)
ወዳጄ---- ከኢህአዴግ ጋር በቀጥታም ይሁን በተዘዋዋሪ የሚገናኙ ጉዳዮችን ያነሳል ይጥላል፣ ይረግማል ይነቅፋል፡፡ ዛሬ የጨዋታ ማሟሻው ያደረገው ገዢው ፓርቲ ኢህአዴግ፣ ሲያወራ ቢውል የማይሰለቸውን ባለ ሁለት ዲጂት የኢኮኖሚ እድገት ሲሆን እስኪበቃው ድረስ ቦጫጨቀው (እድገቱ ወደ አንድ ዲጂት መውረዱን አልሰማም ልበል?) ከዚያ በኋላ የሚያዝያው ምርጫ ተነሳ - ኢህአዴግ በሚሊዮኖች የሚሰሉ እጩዎች ያቀረበበትን ምርጫ ማለቴ ነው! (አንድ ከተማ ህዝብ ሙሉ እጩ!) የሚገርመው ደግሞ ምን መሰላችሁ? ገዢው ፓርቲ እንዲህ በእጩዎች ሲትረፈረፍ፣ ተቃዋሚው ኢዴፓ ግን አንድ ሃባ እጩ ብቻ ነው ያቀረበው (ለመድሃኒት ነው እንዴ?) ለነገሩ ኢዴፓ እጩ አጥቶ እኮ አይደለም - ኢህአዴግን ሊያሳጣው ፈልጎ ነው፡፡ በቂርቆስ ክ/ከተማ (ወይዘሮ አዜብ የሚወዳደሩበት አካባቢ ማለት ነው!) የኢዴፓ ብቸኛው እጩ ከአንድ ጋዜጣ ጋር ባደረጉት ቃለምልልስ “አንድ እጩ ብቻ በማቅረብ ለኢህአዴግ ብጫ ካርድ አሳይተነዋል” ሲሉ ተናግረዋል (ኢህአዴግ በብጫ ካርድ ሊደነግጥ?)
ኢህአዴግን ወቅሶ የማይጠግበው ወዳጄ (አሁንማ ሆቢው ሆኗል!) ሃሜቱን ቀጥሏል። በመራጮች ምዝገባ ወቅት በገዢው ፓርቲ ካድሬዎች ተፈፀመ ያለውን “ትልቅ ሴራ” ተረከልኝ፡፡ ፍቅረኛው ባትደውል ኖሮ ዛሬ ሲጨቀጭቀኝ ሊውል ነበር፡፡ አንድዬ ግን ቀናነቴን አይቶ ከጭቅጭቅ አወጣኝ፡፡ እሱ ሲሄድልኝ ተመልሼ ተኛሁ - የቴሌኮም ቴክስት ሜሴጅ እስኪቀሰቅሰኝ!

አራቱ የኢሕአዴግ መሥራች ፓርቲዎች ከሚቀጥለው ሳምንት ጀምሮ የየራሳቸውን ጠቅላላ ጉባዔ ይጠራሉ፡፡ በተናጠል የሚጠሩት የፓርቲዎቹ ጠቅላላ ጉባዔዎች ቀጣዮቹን የማዕከላዊ ምክር ቤት አባላት ይመርጣሉ፡፡
በእነዚህ ጉባዔዎች የሚመረጡት የማዕከላዊ ኮሚቴ አባላት ደግሞ ብሔራዊ ፓርቲያቸውን ወክለው ለኢሕአዴግ ሥራ አስፈጻሚ ኮሚቴ የሚሆኑ ሰዎችን ይመርጣሉ፡፡ ብአዴን፣ ደኢሕዴግ፣ ኦሕዴድና ሕወሓት ጠቅላላ ጉባዔያቸውን ካጠናቀቁ በኋላ ከመጋቢት 14 እስከ 17 ቀን 2005 ዓ.ም. በሚካሄደው የእናት ፓርቲያቸው (ኢሕአዴግ) ጉባዔ ላይ ለመሳተፍ ባህር ዳር ከተማ ይከታሉ፡፡ 

በዚህ የኢሕአዴግ ዘጠነኛ ጉባዔ ላይ ትኩረት ከሚያገኙ አጀንዳዎች መካከል የኢሕአዴግ ጠቅላላ ጉባዔ አዳማ ከተማ ተስብስቦ ያፀደቃቸውን ዕቅዶች አፈጻጸም፣ በተለይ አዳማ ላይ ለተካሄደው ጉባዔ የቀረበው የሁለት ዓመት የፓርቲው ዕቅድ የአምስት ዓመቱ የዕድገትና ትራንስፎርሜሽን ዕቅዱ መነሻ በመሆኑ በጥልቀት ይገመገማል ተብሏል፡፡ 

ከዚህ በተጨማሪ ነባር ታጋዮችን (አመራሮችን) በመተካካት መርሐ ግብሩ እየቀነሰ በወጣት ኃይል ለመተካት የተያዘውንም ዕቅድ ይገመገማል፡፡ የብአዴን ሥራ አስፈጻሚ ኮሚቴ አባልና የጽሕፈት ቤቱ ኃላፊ አቶ አለምነህ መኮንን ለሪፖርተር እንደገለጹት፣ በብአዴን ደረጃ መተካካቱ በተቀመጠለት የጊዜ ሰሌዳ እየሄደ ነው፡፡ የተለወጠ ነገር የለም ሲሉ አስረድተዋል፡፡ 

በአሁኑ ወቅት የአራቱ ፓርቲዎች የበታች አመራሮች በስብሰባ ተጠምደዋል፡፡ ይህ የፓርቲዎቹ የታችኛው መዋቅር ስብሰባ የሚወክሉ የጠቅላላ ጉባዔ አባላትን መርጦ ይልካል፡፡ የተመረጡት የፓርቲዎቹ ጠቅላላ ጉባዔ አባላት የማዕከላዊ ኮሚቴ አባላትን ይመርጣሉ፡፡ ማዕከላዊ ኮሚቴዎቹ ናቸው ቀደም ሲል ዘጠኝ የኢሕአዴግ ሥራ አስፈጻሚ ኮሚቴ አባላትን የሚልኩት፡፡ በመተካካት ፖለቲካው በርካታ የሕወሓትና የብአዴን ነባር ታጋዮች ከሥራ አስፈጻሚ አባልነት መሰናበታቸው ይታወቃል፡፡ 

ቀሪዎቹ ነባር አመራሮች ባህር ዳር በሚካሄደው ጉባዔ ይተካሉ ተብሎ እንደሚጠበቅ ውስጥ አዋቂዎች ይገልጻሉ፡፡ በባህር ዳሩ ጉባዔ 1,600 አባላት በኢሕአዴግ ይወከላሉ፡፡ ከግንባሩና ከሌሎች ድርጅት በተጨማሪ 900 ተጋባዥና ታዛቢ እንግዶችን ጨምሮ በድምሩ 1,500 ሰዎች የሚገኙበት ነው፡፡ ከእነዚህ በተጨማሪ 42 ምሁራንና 15 የሌሎች አገሮች የፖለቲካ ፓርቲዎች ይገኛሉ ተብሏል፡፡ 

ባህር ዳር ይህንን ጉባዔ የምታስተናግደው የክልሉ ምክር ቤት ከ415 ሚሊዮን ብር በሆነ ወጪ እያስገነባ በሚገኘው ግዙፍ ሕንፃ ውስጥ ነው፡፡ የዓባይ ወንዝ በልዩ ዘዴ ተጠልፎ በሕንፃ ውስጥ የሚያልፍ ሲሆን፣ ሕንፃው በሚቀጥሉት ጥቂት ቀናት ውስጥ ሙሉ ለሙሉ ይጠናቀቃል የሚል እምነት ተይዟል፡፡