A quick Internet search on teff leads to a debate as to whether teff is a grain or a seed. Most sites call it a grain, but it is truly a SEED. It cooks like a grain, though, and it, or its flour, can make good breads, flatbreads, cookies, and porridge.
Teff is wholly gluten-free and is safe for celiacs.
According to Wikipedia: “Eragrostis tef, also known as teff, Williams lovegrass or annual bunch grass, is an annual grass, a species of lovegrass native to the Horn of Africa, notably what is today modern-day Ethiopia and Eritrea. It is cultivated for its edible seeds, also known as teff. Teff originated in the Horn of Africa, corresponding to what is today modern day Ethiopia and Eritrea, where it is one of the most important cereals”
Teff is high in protein and iron, and much of its fiber is a type known as resistant starch, which has been linked in studies to health benefits such as improved blood sugar.
- Contains all of the essential amino acids and offers 7g of protein per serving
- Good source of dietary fiber (16% daily value)
- Excellent source of iron (20% DV)
- Good source of calcium (10% DV)
- A comparable glycemic index (74) to sorghum (72) and oats (71)
Teff can be purchased in whole form (tiny, tiny seeds), or as a flour.
Each of the following recipes calls for the whole-seed teff.
My favorite use for teff is as a porridge I made up:
Makes one large portion
- 1/3 cup teff
- 2/3 cup filtered water
- Big splash of pineapple juice
- Big glob of peanut butter
- As many frozen dark sweet cherries as makes you happy
- Mix teff and water together in a small saucepan.
- Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to simmer for 15-20 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Stir in pineapple juice, peanut butter, and cherries.
- Re heat to just bubbling.
- Serve hot; or, it thickens as it cools and is still delicious.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies with Teff
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Makes 15-20 cookies
(wheat-free, gluten-free, egg-free)
I found a simple peanut butter cookie recipe that called for 1 cup peanut butter, 1 cup sugar, and one egg. Pretty simple, and probably delicious; however, I can’t have cane sugar or eggs, and, I wanted CHOCOLATE!
- ¼ cup teff
- ½ cup filtered water
- 2/3 cup peanut butter, smooth or crunchy; use the natural kind – peanuts and salt ONLY
- 1/2 cup sweetener
- 1 1/2 teaspoons egg replacer, mixed with 1 tbs warm water (I use En-R-G brand)
- 1/4 cup raw cacao or baking cocoa
- Simmer teff and water to cook for 15 minutes. Allow to cool slightly, so you can handle it.
- Mix teff with the rest of the ingredients. Roll into balls, and place on ungreased cookie sheet.
- Place sheet in a 350° preheated oven for about 10 minutes.
Note: These cookies are just as delicious without the cooked teff. Mix and bake everything else as directed.
Ethiopian Injera (a flatbread)
* (image from the Internet)
- 1 cup Teff Flour
- 1 1/2 cups Water (warm)
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- In a deep container with a lid, whisk together the water, flour, and salt. Cover and let rest in the refrigerator overnight for at least 8 hours (or up to 48 hours).
- To cook, heat a non-stick pan over medium heat. Use a liquid measuring cup to pour the batter into the hot pan in a thin spiral.
- Let cook until bubbles begin to form on the surface and the top begins to darken and dry, 3-4 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.