Discovering Ancient Grains: What is Teff?

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discover teffOriginating in Africa thousands of years ago, teff has long been an important food for Highland Ethiopians, who use it to make everything from bread to beer. Now the rest of the world is catching on to the greatness of this tiny grain. With a mild, nutty flavor and lots of calcium, protein, iron and fiber, whole grain teff is a great addition to porridge, stews, pilaf or baked goods.

Teff Stew Recipe

This reinterpretation of wat—an Ethiopian soup traditionally eaten with flatbread made from teff flour—includes whole grain teff in the stew itself.

teff stew 

• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 cup chopped onion
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 1/2 teaspoon paprika
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 1 cup teff
• 2 large tomatoes, chopped
• 1 medium zucchini, sliced
• 1 medium yellow summer squash, sliced
• 4 cups vegetable broth
• 1 cup cooked garbanzo beans
• 1/2 cup lemon juice
• 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
• Ground black pepper
• Salt

1. Heat oil in a heavy 4-quart pot over medium heat. Add onions and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, spices and salt. Reduce heat to low and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add teff and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently, until teff is soft, about 15 minutes. Add vegetables and beans; cook until tender, 10-15 minutes. Add lemon juice and cook 3 more minutes. Add cilantro just before serving. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes 4-6 servings.


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