• Nit'r kibbeh (spiced ghee) (China Squirrel)Source: China Squirrel

This aromatic spiced ghee is traditionally used in Ethiopian and Eritrean cooking, but you can use it in any recipe as you would ghee.






Skill level

Average: 4.8 (9 votes)


  • 500 g unsalted butter
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom 
  • ½ tsp ground fenugreek
  • ½ tsp nigella seeds, ground

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Heat the butter in a small saucepan over low–medium heat until it has begun to simmer gently. Simmer for about 30 minutes, skimming the foam off the surface, until the top layer of butter is completely clear.

Carefully strain the butter through a fine sieve over a bowl, leaving the milk solids in the bottom of the pan.

Stir the spices into the clarififed butter.

Allow to cool then transfer to an airtight container (see Note).


Cook's notes

• The recipe for nit’r kibbeh makes more than you need, but it can be refrigerated for up to 3 months and used in other recipes (like this Ethiopian doro wat or Kulwha - Eritrean stir-fry) or as you would ghee.


Photography, styling and food preparation by China Squirrel