If you haven't heard much about teff or maskal teff flour yet, you probably will soon. Teff is set to be the latest trendy superfood for weight loss and bone health — and you definitely don't want to miss out on all the benefits that this whole grain has to offer.
What is teff?
Teff is a teeny-tiny grain — about the size of a poppy seed — that packs a big nutritional punch. Long thriving in countries like Ethiopia and Eritrea, teff has a unique ability to grow in places where other crops can't, according to the Oldways Whole Grains Council. The gluten-free grain is best known in Ethiopia for being ground into flour and fermented to create traditional injera bread (a spongy sourdough bread). However, given its sturdy crop survival status, teff has been found all over the world — and in a wide variety of different recipes.
Here in the United States, American-made maskal teff flour is a popular option for those of us familiar with the grain. Considering how versatile teff is, there's little wonder why. According to The Teff Company, maskal teff flour can be used in sweet recipes such as pancakes or pastries as well as thickeners for savory dishes like soup and gravy. As you might imagine, maskal teff flour can be a dream come true for folks following a gluten-free diet. But people avoiding gluten aren't the only ones who can benefit from teff or maskal teff flour.
Health Benefits of Teff
Teff is packed with fiber, which makes it helpful for preventing diabetes and assisting with blood sugar control. As you may be aware, fiber can enhance weight loss, especially for people with obesity. But even if you don't need to shed any extra pounds, teff can also help with weight control — it's a great option to prevent unwanted weight gain as well as fat accumulation.
Additionally, Teff is packed with protein. Although it offers about the same amount as more common grains like wheat, it's worth remembering that teff is also gluten-free, much like the more well-known grain called quinoa.
When compared to other grains, teff is impressively high in calcium. A cup of cooked teff actually includes 123 mg of this nutrient, which is necessary to keep your bones healthy and strong as you age.
The best part? Maskal teff flour has the same nutritional value as the grain, provided it's high-quality and ground fresh.
How to Prepare Teff
Although teff can be prepared a wide variety of ways, there's no need to get intimidated by the thought of bringing a new grain into your kitchen. As the company Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods explains, you can start off with a simple yet tasty porridge or stew recipe, both of which are included on the back of its product Bob's Red Mill Whole Grain Teff ($6.33, Amazon).
If you're feeling extra ambitious, you might want to try a more complex recipe using maskal teff flour, such as The Teff Company's Maskal Teff Ivory Teff Flour ($7.49, Amazon). Examples of popular maskal teff flour recipes include teff waffles and teff blueberry banana bread muffins.
Once you get more comfortable cooking with teff and maskal teff flour at home, you'll quickly begin to learn that with this superfood, the sky is the limit. Why not reach for the sky?
Next, learn about more delicious superfoods that can help you live longer in the video below: