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Beans and Sunflower milk Alicha

Beans and Sunflower milk Alicha

Alicha is one of the rare Ethiopian dishes that contains no Berbere. It’s a delicately flavored stew, usually made with turmeric and ginger. This vegetarian version, made with sunflower seeds, is rich and flavorful.


  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 cups red onion, minced
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 cups tomatoes, minced or grated
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ Tbsp turmeric, ground
  • 2 cups Lima beans or white beans, cooked
  • Salt to taste
  • 1-2 Jalapeño peppers


  1. 1

    Toast sunflower seeds in a dry pan on medium heat (3-4 minutes). Let cool for several minutes, then grind roughly in a food processor. Add 2½ cups water and pulse for one minute to make the milk. Filter and reserve the liquid.

  2. 2

    Heat a pot on medium then add onions. Grill, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Cover and continue cooking onions for 5 minutes to dry and toast them a little.

    Add oil and stir well. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. If needed, reduce heat so the onion doesn’t burn. 

  3. 3

    Incorporate tomatoes, garlic, and turmeric. Stir well and cook for 5 minutes more.

  4. 4

    Add beans and sunflower milk. Salt to taste and continue cooking for another 10-15 minutes. Julienne jalapeños and add to the Alicha.