A true baking enthusiast is always looking to try a new ingredient in their cooking experience. If you need to substitute the traditional white wheat flour for something new that’s going to add a totally different character to your bread, pizza, crackers, cookies or other pastry, consider this organic teff flour by Tobia Teff.
What is teff?
Image credit: organicfacts.net
Due to not being so widely popular, like wheat flour for instance, some people have a rather superficial idea of what teff flour is, and what teff is in the first place. Teff is a gluten-free grain approximately with the size of a poppy seed, which varies from red and white, to dark brown in color and has a subtle nutty flavor. Its history roots are thousands of years old, traced to civilizations of Abyssinia, Thriving in different climates and altitude (up to 2100 m.), today teff grains grow mostly in the lands of Eritrea and Ethiopia where it has been a staple crop for many years. The natives use it to make their traditional teff bread called injera.
Nutritional Profile and Health benefits of teff
Teff and teff flour are quickly becoming inherent to those who are searching for alternative gluten-free flours and nutritional breads that can even promote weight loss and overall well-being.
Here’s the impressive nutritional profile of 1 cup cooked teff:
- 6g fat
- 255 calories
- 50g carbohydrates
- 20mg sodium
- 10g protein
- 7g fiber
- 46mg thiamine (31% DV)
- 08mg riboflavin (5% DV)
- 24mg vitamin B6 (12% DV)
- 3mg niacin (11% DV)
- 2mg manganese (360% DV)
- 126mg magnesium (32% DV)
- 17mg iron (29% DV)
- 302mg phosphorus (30% DV)
- 5mg copper (28% DV)
- 123mg calcium (12% DV)
- 8mg zinc (19% DV)
- 269mg potassium (6% DV)
The nutritional analysis shows that teff is extremely rich in manganese, plus it offers good amounts of other minerals. With 123mg of calcium per cooked cup, it’s also one of the most calcium-rich grains possible. It also becomes clear, that teff is a decent source of B complex vitamins that are of crucial importance to maintaining optimal health.
With 7g of fiber in each cup, we can conclude that this is a fantastic fiber-rich food that can facilitate smooth digestion and gut health. Furthermore, similar to most grains, this one is rich in slow carbohydrates, but what you may not know, is that between 20% – 40% of the carbs are classified as a resistant starch type. Starch releases energy gradually, it could benefit blood sugar control, colon health, and weight management.
The iron in teff boosts oxygen circulation through the blood, and prevents iron deficiency.
Teff may promote weight loss not just by offering high amounts of fiber, but also because of the copper in it. That’s because copper helps for the generation of Adenosine Triphosphate in the mitochondria of cells, and ATP is the body’s energy currency. This means copper stimulates the body’s ability to produce the fuel it needs to increase energy levels and burn fat.
Teff is good for our immune system due to the presence of B vitamins in it. B vitamins are needed for many body functions and keeping a strong immunity is just one of them.
Because teff is a very potent source of calcium and manganese, it supports bone health. Calcium alone is required for building bone solidity. Manganese, when combined with calcium and other minerals, can help reduce bone loss, especially to older individuals who are prone to having weak bones and fractures.
Teff has been reported to be a grain that supports heart health. Being low in sodium, it doesn’t obstruct the arteries too much, not to mention there are studies that hint at teff’s ability to lower the blood pressure, and general strain on the cardiovascular system.
Cooking With Teff
Like we mentioned, in Ethiopia teff flour is fermented and made into the sourdough bread called injera. Injera is often used as a serving plate. Food is piled on a big round of the bread on a tray in the middle of the dining table. Diners tear pieces of it and roll them in the food.
Today teff has passed beyond the traditional cuisine of Ethiopia. It finds place in many health-friendly recipes for breads, pancakes, cereals, snacks, and many other similar products, especially for gluten-intolerant individuals who crave these kinds of foods.
Some culinary experts advise “dry cooking” teff for 6-7 minutes, with 1 cup of teff in 1 cup of water, then cover it for 5 minutes. Other chefs like Robin Asbell recommend cooking teff for 20 minutes if you want to enjoy a creamier result Her proportions are 3 cups water and 1 cup teff. Check out below for some delicious teff recipes.