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Saltwinds Coffee Company
Saltwinds Coffee Company
Made in the Maritimes

Unveiling Ethiopia’s Easter Coffee Tradition: A Journey of Aroma, Blessings, and Community

The special coffee ceremony in Ethiopia during Easter is a significant cultural and social tradition that reflects hospitality, community bonding, and religious observance. Here’s an overview of what typically happens during this ceremony:

The Ethiopian Easter Coffee Ceremony includes serving coffee from a traditional Jebena into finjal cups
  1. Preparation of Coffee: The coffee ceremony begins with the preparation of freshly roasted coffee beans. The beans are often roasted on-site in front of the guests to enhance the aroma and create a sense of freshness. Traditionally, the beans are roasted over hot coals in a small pan called a ‘menkeshkesh’ until they reach a rich, dark brown color.
  2. Grinding and Brewing: Once roasted, the coffee beans are ground using a mortar and pestle or a hand grinder. The ground coffee is then brewed in a special clay or metal pot called a ‘jebena.’ The jebena is typically narrow at the top and has a wide base, allowing for the coffee to be brewed and poured in a ceremonial manner.
  3. Incense and Blessings: As the coffee brews, traditional incense such as frankincense or myrrh is burned, filling the air with a pleasant aroma. This practice is symbolic and is believed to ward off evil spirits while purifying the space for the coffee ceremony. Prayers and blessings may also be offered during this time, especially during Easter, to invoke blessings for the community and the participants.
  4. Three Rounds of Coffee: In Ethiopian coffee ceremonies, three rounds of coffee are typically served, each with its own significance. The first round, called ‘abol,’ is the strongest brew and is served to signify the beginning of the ceremony. The second round, ‘tona,’ is slightly weaker, and the third round, ‘baraka,’ is the mildest and often considered to bring blessings and good fortune.
  5. Sharing and Socializing: The brewed coffee is poured into small traditional cups called ‘cini’ or ‘finjal,’ and it is customary for the host or hostess to serve the coffee to each guest individually. The act of serving and sharing coffee fosters a sense of community and togetherness, making the ceremony a social event where people can connect, converse, and enjoy the rich flavors of Ethiopian coffee.

The Ethiopian coffee ceremony holds deep cultural significance and is a cherished tradition that brings people together, especially during festive occasions like Easter.

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