Injera (Gluten-Free Ethiopian Bread)
Total Time: 1-3 days fermentation, 30 minutes active
- 1½ cups ground teff
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Mix the teff with the water in a medium bowl and let stand at room temperature to ferment, covered with a dish towel, until it bubbles and turns sour. This may take up to 3 days, but can go faster in warmer weather. You are looking for the consistency of a thin pancake batter.
- Stir in the salt.
- Lightly oil a nonstick skillet with the olive oil (at least 8 inches, or larger) and bring to medium heat.
- Ladle in teff batter to cover the bottom of the skillet— about 1/3 cup for an 8 inch skillet. You want the batter to be thicker than you would for a crepe, but thinner than a pancake. Rotate the skillet side to side to allow the batter to coat the bottom entirely.
- Allow the injera to cook until small bubbles form on the surface and the edges begin to lift from the pan. Do not allow to brown, and do not flip— the texture contrast between the cooked side and the bubbled side is intentional.
- Slide onto a plate and place wax paper or foil on top to get ready for the next piece.
- Add a bit more oil to coat the bottom of your skillet again and repeat the process, including the layering of wax paper or foil between the layers, and continue to stack.
- To serve, lay one piece of injera on the bottom of the plate and spoon your dishes over the top. Serve the extra injera on the side by rolling it up and then slicing in half, as pictured.
Teff is a powerful little grain! It is gluten-free, high in protein, and contains 8 of the essential amino acids your body needs for optimal functioning. The iron in teff is an easily absorbable form and is a great choice for those suffering from low blood iron. The benefits of iron, combined with the high protein content make this grain a great option for vegetarians. Its high fiber content and low glycemic index further contribute to the long-lasting satiation this grain provides.
This grain is a staple in the cuisine of Ethiopia (one of my favorite!). As mentioned in the directions, one slice is traditionally served on a plate with a variety of vegetables, meats and sauces atop it. Extra injera is served on the side to rip off pieces and use to pick up and eat the food with. It is absolutely delicious and I highly suggest you visit an Ethiopian restaurant, or at least make you own injera at home!