Saturday, November 21, 2015

Healthy Foods: Teff

Teff (Eragrostis Tef) is another of the Biblical crops. Though it probably comes from Ethiopia, it was found in the pyramids of Egypt which are 5500 years old.

It's a traditional crop in Ethiopia and Eritrea, but since recently also cultivated, among others, in the Netherlands and the USA. Why such sudden popularity? The fact that it's low in gluten (English Wiki claims that it's completely gluten-free, but I will go with the Dutch version) makes teff attractive for people with celiac disease,  but teff also has a high calcium content, a lot of vitamins and minerals (such as thiamin, magnesium, zinc), a lot of iron and it is also rich in protein and contains all 8 essential amino acids.

When I first saw it in a supermarket I was intrigued and after reading about it, decided to give teff a try. Today we ate it for breakfast. The package you see is actually a mixture of teff, corn flour and rice flour, you have to add 5 to 6 table spoons of this stuff to a cup of cold or hot milk, and your breakfast is ready. It was rather neutral in taste, but it didn't taste weird or something. I found it definitely better than quinoa. Teff is pricy, but it's still cheaper than the instant breakfast made of spelt.

If you are interested, read more about teff over here. 


  1. Housewife from FinlandNovember 23, 2015 at 5:25 AM

    Finland's Coeliac Association claims that Teff is gluten free. Also the packages say that it is "naturally gluten free", and here in Finland they are very strick with those package labels.

    I am celiac myself but haven't tried Teff jet. I should propably give it a try. I prefer buckwheat, I like it's taste and it is also very healthy.

  2. Dutch Wiki claims that teff contains gluten, but not a "dangerous kind of gluten" (I didn't even know there were several kinds), but that it fits into gluten-free diet. Concerning buckwheat, do you mean flour or grain? The problem with low gluten content types of flour is that the bread doesn't rise very well (at least, when using a bread-baking machine). I know you can use buckwheat flour for pancakes, as for grain, it makes a good breakfast, but you must cook it for such a long time...

    The convenience of teff is, it makes instant breakfast, the negative side is it's expensive.

  3. Housewife from FinlandNovember 24, 2015 at 4:15 AM

    I make sourdough buckwheat bread from the flour. I usually add 1 tablespoon of spyllium to make it rise better. Sometimes I made borridge but not from grain. We have sort of "flakes", it is squished and pre-cooked grain. So it takes only 10 minutes to make borridge.

    But mostly we eat turkish yoghurt and berries and some crushed nuts and seeds for breakfast. Delicious and quick. :)

  4. What is spyllium and how does it work? We mostly eat jogurt as dessert after dinner.

  5. Housewife from FinlandNovember 25, 2015 at 4:18 AM

    Psyllium is flour made of the seed of some indian plant. It is very high in fiber and when added to water, it goes like jelly. It helps in gluten-free baking, makes bread rise better.

    I just made a huge mistake and added some of it to meatloaf. It was very slimy meatloaf... I thought it just would have made it more moist.