Kisra are a thin, fermented sorghum batter sheets made to accompany a type of stew known as mullah. The fermented kisra batter is cooked on a flat metal hot-plate known as a saaj.
Prep time: 30 minutes Cooking time: 20 minutes
Special equipment: kisa pan (saaj kisra), batter spreader (gargareeba) or crepe making utensil, fermenting jug or container (khamara)
Special ingredients: sorghum flour (dageeg zura)
Making 20 to 25 kisra sheets, serves 4 to 5
- 400g sorghum flour
- 100g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 to 4 tablespoons yoghurt – fermenting agent
- 800ml to 1L water
Mix sorghum flour, plain flour, salt and water into a batter with a consistency slightly thinner than pancake mixture. Add recently yoghurt expired and mix well into the thin batter mixture. Leave the mixture overnight or for at least 10 hours in a warm dry place to ferment.
As mentioned, a special hot plate cooker is used to make kisra known as a saaj. If one is not available, a pancake pan or regular frying pan may also be used. Heat the saaj or pan and lightly grease with oil or ghee.
Once ready to cook the fermented sorghum into sheets, mix in plain flour to give the batter better hold and to slightly dilute the excessively sour taste of the fermented sorghum. Ensure the consistency is still thinner than runny pancake batter, and add water if needed. Pour a ladle full or approximately 125ml of the batter mixture onto the saaj or pan in a concave manner at the top of the pan, then quickly spread downwards in a figure 8 manner using a gargariba into a circular wafer-thin sheet. Otherwise use crepe making utensil that spreads the batter evenly and thinly into a wafer-thin kisra sheet.
Allow 1 minute to evenly cook one side, then use a clean gargareeba to lift the edges to help quickly remove the sheet in one swift move and stack the cooked sheets on the side. Repeat the process until the batter is finished and ensure the saaj or pan is well greased between each sheet. Make approximately 3 to 4 kisra per person.
- After fermentation, check the batter’s consistency, plain flour can be added to help thicken the batter if it appears too thin.
- Sprouted sorghum flour can be used instead of regular sorghum flour to make kisra asalia or honey kisra, due to the slightly sweet flavour of the sprouted sorghum flour.
- Tasting the batter for a sharp taste after the fermentation process indicates that it has fermented well enough for kisra to be made.
- Pour the fermented batter onto baking trays and either sun-dry, leave at room temperature with plenty of ventilation, such as under a fan, until completely dry. Break apart into small pieces and store at room temperature or freeze for up to 1 year.