Ibrahim and Alyson Sweet Mohamed. Submitted photo

Ibrahim and Alyson Sweet Mohamed. Submitted photo

Taste Shahiya

Shahiya Chutney is a Minneapolis-based company that blends powerful Ethiopian flavors to create an exceptionally unique hot sauce. Owners Zahra Ismael and her son Ibrahim Mohamed bring their family recipe to downtown Minneapolis for the Mill City Farmers Market every Saturday.

Shahiya Chutney, like the market, is working to create a community based on diversity, sustainability and strong communal values.

“As a family that comes from a diverse background, we appreciate quality, beautiful and appetizing foods,” explains Ibrahim. “The integrity of our products comes from decades of traveling and influences from eastern traditions. With a Turkish, Greek, Amharic and Oromo (Ethiopian) background, we create a unique hot sauce.”

Ibrahim, who works as an urban farmer throughout the week, is able to source many of the ingredients in their small-batch hot sauce, or chutney, from local Minnesota farmers. Shahiya Chutneys also include some ingredients, such as berbere, made by family in Ethiopia where it is more flavorful. Ultimately, Ibrahim and his mom are hoping to replicate and make their own berbere here in Minneapolis using traditional methods.

Shahiya Chutney, which comes in traditional hot, green mild and a variety of seasonal flavors like turmeric and gooseberry maple, can be incorporated into sauces and dressings like the recipe below or substituted for hot sauce in your favorite recipes.

You can find Shahiya Chutney at the Mill City Farmers Market, 704 S. 2nd St., 8 a.m.–1 p.m. Saturdays.

Lamb merguez kebabs

By market chef Beth Jones

These flavorful kebabs are full of North African flavors which pair perfectly with locally made sauces from our vendor Shahiya Chutney. Serves 4.


  • ½ teaspoon whole cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon whole coriander seeds
  • ½ teaspoon whole fennel seeds
  • 1 pound ground lamb from Sunshine Harvest Farm
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic, or 2 Tablespoons garlic scapes, minced
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 Tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 4 pitas
  • 1 large tomato, halved and cut into slices
  • 1 jar Shahiya Chutney

Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

  • 2 cup good quality yogurt, preferably Greek
  • 1 Tablespoon minced scallion
  • ½ cup small dice cucumbers
  • Juice and zest from half a lemon
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped mint
  • 1 dash Shahiya Chutney
  • Pinch salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, or garlic scapes, minced


Toast the cumin, coriander and fennel seeds in a dry saute pan until fragrant. Grind the seeds finely in a spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle. Mix the spices with all the remaining ingredients and divide the meat into 8 equal portions, roughly 2 ounces each. Form into sausage shaped kebabs around 8 skewers. Chill the kebabs thoroughly, 1–2 hours.

Next, mix Cucumber Yogurt Sauce ingredients thoroughly and chill for 1 hour.

When kebabs are finished marinating, preheat the grill to medium high heat. Spray grill thoroughly just before putting the skewers on to cook. Grill for 2 minutes, then turn kebabs. Grill another 2–3 minutes and check the temperature. Kebabs should reach 160. Remove from the grill. Brush the pita lightly with oil and grill for 30 seconds on each side.

Serve the kebabs on the pita with, chutney, tomato and cucumber yogurt sauce.