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Dabo – Ethiopian Milk and Honey Bread

Dairy Dairy
6 Servings Serving Icon
3 Hours, 30 Minutes Preferences Icon

This traditional Ethiopian bread was a nostalgic connection to the ancestral homeland. Originally baked in a round clay pot covered in the burning embers of a fire pit inside the ground, it was wrapped in banana leaves for baking. Following the community’s Aliyah to Israel, they use lettuce leaves or none at all and bake it in a traditional oven or even on a burner on the stove.



Mix the yeast with warm water and one tablespoon honey in a large mixing bowl to proof and let it stand for 15 minutes.


Beat the honey with the egg, salt, and spices in another bowl. Warm up the milk with the melted butter.


Add the honey mix, milk and butter and mix together until it forms a soft dough.


Knead by hand on a floured surface or in a standing mixer – the dough is very sticky and you’ll know it is ready when it becomes smooth, stretchy, and firm.


Cover the bowl and leave it in a warm place to double in volume, for about 90 minutes.


Pour dough into baking dish or pot that is layered with Gefen Parchment Paper and floured generously to prevent sticking. Turn the dough out directly onto the pan and gently shape into a round loaf.


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius/400 degrees Fahrenheit/gas six while the Dabo is rising.


Mix the water with salt for the glaze and brush over the top of the loaf, making sure it doesn’t run down the sides and underneath (sticking hazard again).


Sprinkle the fennel or sesame seeds over the top, let it proof for about 15-20 minutes and put in the oven.


Cover pot tightly with greased aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.


Lay a baking sheet over the pot and flip over so the Dabo is upside down and bake for another 20-30 minutes, depending on your oven.


Remove when fully browned, flip and let cool on a rack so as to prevent moisture from collecting at the bottom of the loaf.


Serve warm or at room temperature.


Can also be made into small rolls, just cut baking time to 25-30 minutes and check so as not to overbake.