Teff flour, a tiny grain that packs a nutritional punch, has been gaining popularity across the globe for its impressive health benefits.
This superfood, which is native to Africa, is now widely cultivated in many parts of the world, including India. Teff flour is known for its high protein and fiber content, making it a popular choice among health-conscious individuals.
But what is teff flour called in India? In this article, we’ll explore the answer to this question and delve into the many benefits of this nutrient-rich grain.
So, let’s get started!
What Is Teff Flour Called In India?
Teff flour is known as “small millet” in India. It is a close cousin of Ragi, another popular grain in India that is also known for its impressive nutritional profile.
Teff flour is becoming increasingly popular in India, particularly among those who follow a gluten-free diet. It is a great alternative to wheat flour and can be used in a variety of dishes, including bread, pancakes, and porridge.
Introduction To Teff Flour
Teff flour is made from the tiny teff grain, which is native to Ethiopia and Eritrea. Despite its small size, teff is packed with nutrients and is considered a superfood. Teff flour is gluten-free and has a high protein and fiber content, making it a great choice for those with dietary restrictions or looking to add more nutrition to their diet.
Teff flour has a nutty and mild flavor, making it a versatile ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes. It can be used as a substitute for wheat flour in many recipes, and is particularly well-suited for making bread and pasta. Teff flour is also a common ingredient in Ethiopian cuisine, where it is used to make the traditional flatbread called injera.
In India, teff flour is commonly known as “small millet” due to its small size and similarity to other millet grains like Ragi. Teff flour has gained popularity in recent years as a healthy and nutritious alternative to traditional wheat flour. It is widely available in health food stores and online retailers, making it easy to incorporate into your diet.
Teff Flour’s Health Benefits
Teff flour is a powerhouse of nutrients and offers a range of health benefits. It is high in dietary fiber, protein, and essential vitamins and minerals, making it a great addition to any diet. Here are some of the health benefits associated with teff flour:
1. Gluten-Free: Teff flour is naturally gluten-free, making it a great option for people with celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and wheat allergy.
2. High in Nutrients: Teff flour contains more nutrients per serving than all-purpose flour. It is rich in B vitamins and a variety of minerals including calcium, iron, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, potassium, and zinc.
3. Low Glycemic Index: Teff flour has a low glycemic index (GI) rating, making it a great choice for diabetics to help manage blood sugar.
4. Digestive Health: The high fiber content of teff flour is great for regulating digestion and relieving issues with diarrhea and constipation.
5. Cardiovascular Health: Teff flour is naturally low in sodium, making it a heart-healthy choice for people with high blood pressure or other cardiovascular risk factors. It also contains nutrients essential for healthy cardiovascular function such as vitamin B6 and zinc.
6. Bone Health: Teff flour is very beneficial for the immune system as well as healthy bones and tissues due to its high calcium content.
7. Immune System Support: Teff flour contains protein, amino acids, vitamins and minerals that may help to ensure that the immune system becomes stronger and more efficient than ever before.
Teff Flour In Indian Cuisine
Teff flour is a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of Indian dishes. One popular way to use teff flour is to make rotis, a type of flatbread that is a staple in Indian cuisine. Teff rotis are fortified with nutrition, flavor, and texture, making them an excellent addition to any meal.
To make teff rotis, start by adding hot water to the teff and oat flour mixture a little at a time. Knead the dough gently until it forms a smooth, glistening ball of dough. Let the dough rest for 20-30 minutes before dividing it into eight equal pieces.
Roll each piece of dough into a ball and dip it into some teff flour before rolling it out on a clean, dry surface dusted with more teff flour. Heat a cast iron or non-stick skillet over medium heat and transfer the rolled dough to the skillet. Brush the top side with a little water and then flip it over. Brush the other side with a little oil and cook and flip in 20-second intervals until you start to see brown spots and the roti smells fragrant. Place the cooked roti on a plate lined with a kitchen towel and cover with the towel to keep warm and moist as you cook the other rotis.
Teff flour can also be used to make idlis, a popular South Indian breakfast dish. To make teff idlis, mix teff flour with water and let it sit overnight. In the morning, add yogurt, salt, and baking soda to the mixture and steam it in an idli steamer until cooked through.
In addition to rotis and idlis, teff flour can be used to make dosas, pancakes, and porridge. It is an excellent gluten-free alternative to wheat flour and can be used in many traditional Indian dishes.
Where To Find Teff Flour In India
If you are looking to buy Teff flour in India, there are several options available. One of the easiest ways to find Teff flour is to search for it online. Many online retailers offer Teff flour, and you can easily compare prices and brands to find the best option for you.
You can also check with your local health food store or organic grocery store. These stores often carry a variety of gluten-free flours, including Teff flour. If they don’t have it in stock, they may be able to order it for you.
Another option is to contact a Teff exporter in India. As mentioned above, India exports a large quantity of Teff every year, and there are several Teff exporters who can provide high-quality Teff flour.
How To Use Teff Flour In Cooking
Teff flour is a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of recipes. Here are some tips on how to use teff flour in cooking:
1. Substitute teff flour for regular flour: Teff flour can be used as a substitute for regular flour in many recipes. It works well in baked goods like cookies, cakes, and bread. Start by substituting a small amount of teff flour (25%) for regular flour and adjust the ratio as needed.
2. Combine teff flour with other gluten-free flours: Teff flour has a strong flavor, so it’s often best to use it in combination with other gluten-free flours like buckwheat or almond flour. This will help balance out the flavor and texture of your baked goods.
3. Use teff flour in pancakes and flatbreads: Teff flour works particularly well in recipes that don’t require much rising, like pancakes and flatbreads. It adds a nutty flavor and creates a tender, fluffy texture.
4. Add spices to enhance the flavor: Teff flour pairs well with a variety of spices, including cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom. Adding these spices to your teff-based recipes can enhance the flavor and create a more complex taste profile.
5. Cook teff grain as a side dish: Teff grain can be cooked alone or in combination with other grains and vegetables. Simply cook 1 cup of teff with 3 cups of water or stock and season with your favorite spices. Teff grain makes a delicious side dish for stews, stuffing, and pilaf.
When cooking with teff flour or grain, it’s important to use a recipe that calls for it. If you’re using teff as a gluten-free alternative, you can substitute teff flour for about 25% of the white flour called for in most recipes. Just be sure to purchase certified gluten-free teff flour to ensure it is safe from cross-contamination. With these tips, you can start incorporating teff into your cooking and enjoy its unique flavor and nutritional benefits.