From: Gayle Koszegi
Teff is the staple grain of Ethiopia.
The grain yields a seed much smaller than the size of a wheat grain,
but is the basis of Ethiopian traditional cookery.
Teff flour is the main ingredient of the pleasantly sour pancakelike
bread known as injera, which literally underlies every Ethiopian
To set an Ethiopian table, one lays down a circular injera on
top of which the other food is arrayed, directly, without any plate.
Other injeras are served on the side and torn into pieces to be
used as grabbers for the food on the "tablecloth" injera.
Eventually, after the meal is finished, you eat the tablecloth,
a delicious repository of the juices from the food that has been
resting on it.
Nutrition-minded Americans have turned to teff as a source of
calcium, fiber, and protein.
It is also an alternative grain for people allergic to the gluten
It has an appealing, sweet, molasses-like flavor, and it boils up
into a gelatinous porridge.
1. Mix ground teff with 3 1/2 cups water and let stand in a bowl covered
with a dish towel, at room temperature, until it bubbles and has turned
- 3/4 cup teff, ground fine (this may be done either in a flour
mill or in a blender after moistening in 3 1/2 cups water)
- sunflower or other vegetable oil
This may take as long as 3 days.
The fermenting mixture should be the consistency of pancake batter
(which is exactly what it is).
2. Stir in salt, a little at a time, until you can barely detect
3. Lightly oil an 8- or 9-inch skillet (or a larger one if you
Heat over medium heat.
Then proceed as you would with a normal pancake or crepe.
Pour in enough batter to cover the bottom of the skillet.
About 1/4 cup will make a thin pancake covering the surface of an
8-inch skillet if you spread the batter around immediately by turning
and rotating the skillet in the air.
This is the classic French method for very thin crepes.
Injera is not supposed to be paper thin so you should use a bit
more batter than you would for crepes, but less than you would for
4. Cook briefly, until holes form in the injera and the edges
lift from the pan.
Remove and let cool.
Yields 10 to 12 injeras.