It's a fine grain—about the size of a poppy seed—and comes in a variety of colors, from white and red to dark brown. Teff grows predominantly in Ethiopia and Eritrea. As such, it comprises the staple grain of their cuisines. The grain has a very mild, nutty flavor, is very dense and packs a serious nutritional punch.
With its excellent balance of amino acids, and high protein, calcium, and iron, it makes a great gluten-free flour replacement. 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 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- according to Teffco.com.
The first time I tried teff was in cookies that I bought at a local farmer's market over the summer. I questioned the grain and later went home to google and learn up on this new-to-me grain. The cookies from the market, for the record, were really delicious. So I thought, "why can't I make these cookies myself?"
It took me a few months, and a bag sat quietly in my pantry for quite some time after being picked up off the store shelf initially, but here I am today with a solid recipe that I love under my baking belt.
These cookies are gluten-free, dairy-free (assuming you use vegan chocolate chips), soy-free (again, using soy-free chips) and nut free.
This was from Artsy Foodie:
1 cup roasted almond butter, unsalted-- I used peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 oz unsweetened applesauce (1/2 cup)-- I used about 1 1/4 cup because my batter was too dry
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 1/2 cups teff flour
1/8 tsp salt
dark chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Oil two cookie sheets-- I used PAM
- In a food processor, place the almond butter, vanilla, apple sauce and maple syrup. Mix to cream the ingredients together (2 minutes scraping the sides as needed)
- Add the Teff flour and salt to the food processor and pulse until combined.
- Scoop batter to make balls 1 1/4" in diameter and then arrange in rows--leave an 1" of space around each one.
- Flatten with the back of a fork each ball of batter.
- Arrange dark chocolate chips evenly on top of each cookie.
- Bake for 13 minutes in the center of the oven. The bottoms should be slightly golden but the tops will still be slightly soft.
- Let cool on a rack.
- Keep in an airtight container in your pantry or on the counter for a few days
These cookies did not last more than a day in my house(yes, Jordan and Zach gobbled them up too!), but they are definitely pretty healthy....right?