Sunday, 25 May 2014

May SuperFood of the Month is .......Teff!!!

I first learned about the nutritional benefits of Teff from the lovely Kathy Smart at The Gluten-Free Expo in Toronto a few weeks ago. She is an amazing women with a wonderful, allergen-friendly cookbook full of great ideas  and recipe for cooking in the kitchen. I highly recommend following her on twitter @Smart_Kitchen for more health tips.

Teff is traditionally used to make injera bread, a staple item in Ethiopian cuisine; injera bread is a spongy crepe that functions as a utensil to scoop up meats and sauces. Teff is high an iron, something many women, and celiacs, are deficient in, and also a good source of calcium, magnesium,
iron, B1, B2, B3 and zinc. Teff can easily be ground into flour and ¼ cup has 4 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber. Use teff in place of regular flour as a thickening agent in soups, stews or gravies and as Kathy Smart says "It's delicious with chocolate. Teff flour and chocolate go together like peanut butter and honey.” Inspired by this quote, I was excited to come across the recipe below by one of my favourite food bloggers for a brownie recipe using teff and almond meal as the base.

I didn’t have any bananas so I added 1 egg instead but you could always keep the recipe vegan without this modification. I love all the added nutrition in this recipe from the nuts and fruit, and also reduced the maple syrup to 1/3 cup and it still tasted great! I have my eye on her new cookbook and am looking to add it to my collection soon.

I love my job as a manager for Pedalheads bike camps in the summer, but a strict nut/peanut free policy leaves me craving a big scoop of almond butter when I get home from work. To help get my fix before camp starts, I made a giant batch of these peanut butter teff cookies.
My current work schedule is pretty hectic and I needed a quick, high-energy  snack that would fit into my backpack and travel well. I replaced the oil with applesauce and cut down on the maple syrup in the following recipe for a delicious and chewy cookie

Next on my list is to try making my own homemade injera bread. I ate this weekly when living in Rwanda at my favorite restaurant called Lalibela. They put on a fabulous Friday night buffet dinner wit the most delicious spongy and tangy injera. NOTE: some restaurants add white flour to their injera recipe since teff is expensive, meaning the end product is no longer gluten-free. Ask the restaurant if they have an injera that is 100% teff or a mixture of rice flour and teff to make sure you don’t end up with major digestive upset the next day. Side not: this is VERY possible even if you tested negative for celiac. I firmly believe there is such a thing as non-celiac gluten sensitivity contrary to the latest study and Internet craze (more on that to come in the next post!)

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