Canjeero and shaax recipe

By: Ajmal Abdirahman

Canjeero is a breakfast staple in Somalia. Both my mom and dad would eat it almost every morning when they lived in Somalia. It’s one of my favorites from Somali food. I grew up eating it almost everyday just like my parents. My mom would get up very early in the morning and make a big batch of Canjeero and alongside she would also make her signature Somali shaax!

Canjeero can be eaten in many different ways. Like with shaax (which is Somali tea), with sugar and sesame oil, with goat or camel liver (which is called “beer” in Somali), with oodkaac (which is a Somali dish of preserved jerky style beef cubes), or my favorite way, with honey!

Image taken from: es.html

Somali tea (Shaax), was first introduced to Somalia through ancient trade with the Indians and Arabs. It’s typical for Somalis to drink this throughout the day but mostly at breakfast or late at night. Tea is widely preferred in Somalia over coffee. If you add milk to your tea then it is called Shaax Bigaysi.

I asked my mother for her recipes; here they are!

Canjeero Recipe:


  • 2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 cup of self rising flour
  • 1 cup of corn flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3-4 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon of yeast
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar

Instructions on how to make Canjeero:

  1. First combine all the flours in one large bowl along with the salt, sugar, and yeast and whisk well
  2. Add the water slowly until you get the right consistency (thick and smooth)
  3. Then let the batter sit for an hour or overnight
  4. Enjoy!

Shaax Recipe:


  • Cold water (amount is how much tea you want to make)
  • 1⁄2 cup of sugar
  • Cardamom (add desired amount)
  • Cinnamon sticks (add desired amount)
  • Cloves (add desired amount)
  • Ginger (you can use powdered ginger but fresh is best, also add desired amount)
  • Black tea bags or black tea leaves (add desired amount)

Instructions on how to make Shaax:

  1. First grab a kettle and pour your cold water into it
  2. Either boil the water first or boil when all ingredients are added
  3. Add your sugar
  4. Then add all your spices, cardamom, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and ginger, then let that all boil together
  5. When that all boils together nicely add your tea bags or tea leaves
  6. Boil for a couple of minutes until it gets to a dark brown color
  7. Strain the tea and pour it into your thermos or tea pot
  8. Enjoy!

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