Teff flour is made from the grain teff, and is of considerable importance in eastern Africa (particularly around the horn of Africa). Notably, it is the chief ingredient in the bread injera, an important component of Ethiopian cuisine.
Teff is a fine grain about the size of a poppy seed that comes in a variety of colors, from white and red to dark brown. Teff grows predominantly in Ethiopia and Eritrea, and thrives even in difficult climates. As such, it comprises the staple grain of their cuisines. The grain has a very mild, nutty flavor, and it packs a serious nutritional punch. Teff has an excellent balance of amino acids, and it is also high in protein, calcium, and iron. Ground into flour, teff is used to make the traditional bread, injera: a flat, pancake-like, fermented bread that complements the exotic spices found in the regional food. It can also be ground into flour to make an excellent gluten-free flour alternative, and can be used to make pie crusts, cookies, breads, and an assortment of other baked goods. Teff can also be eaten whole and steamed, boiled, or baked as a side dish or a main course.
Teff’s history traces back thousands of years,to ancient civilizations of Abyssinia, as a reliable support to our early ancestors’ survival. Attracted to its delicious taste, gluten-free composition, and versatility, more consumers are committing to teff. Along with other alternative grains like quinoa and millet, this grain has become well-known in the health foods community because of its great nutritional value.
The Tiny Grain with Big Health Benefits
Teff leads all the grains by a wide margin in its calcium content, with a cup of cooked teff offering 123mg, about the same amount of calcium as in a half-cup of cooked spinach. Teff is high in resistant starch, a newly-discovered type of dietary fiber that can benefit blood sugar management, weight control, and colon health. It’s estimated that 20-40% of the carbohydrates in teff are resistant starches. A gluten-free grain with a mild flavor, teff is a healthy and versatile ingredient for many gluten-free.
Recipes using Teff Flour see Here