In the highlands of Ethiopia the main staple food grown is Tef or Teff, which is a very fine grass-like cereal. Tef flour is used to prepare ‘injera’ or ‘enjera’, which is a soft spongy bread that looks like a pancake. In a few other countries tef is grown to produce hay as a fodder crop.
Annual Bunch Grass
Warm Season Annual Bunch Grass
Basic information and facts
Highlands of Ethiopia
Ethiopia, Eritrea, Australia, India
Teff is an annual grass with very fine grains.
Teff has tiny grains that are only 1 to 1.7 mm long and 0.6 to 1 mm in diameter.
Climate and weather:
Teff is grown in Ethiopia at altitudes between 1800 and 2200 meters where the weather is relatively cool (10 to 27 °C).
Teff is a self pollinating plant.
The height of the plants can vary from about 25 to 130 centimeters.
Teff is rather tolerant to drought but can also tolerate waterlogged conditions.
Spacing (close range)
Did you know that?
- Teff is the smallest grain in the world. The grains are just over 1 mm long and less than a mm wide.
- Teff has a very high nutritional quality. It contains a lot of protein, calcium and iron.
- 1000 teff seeds have a weight of about 0.3 to 0.4 grams.
Ground teff (3 cups)
Water (4 cups)
Salt (to taste)
Vegetable oil (for the skillet)
How to prepare:
Mix the teff, water and salt together in a bowl and stir to get a smooth batter without lumps. Cover and let it rest for one to three days. This will allow the dough to ferment, which will give the injera a slightly sour taste.
For cooking the injera, heat up a large skillet and add a bit of oil to prevent sticking, The dough should be rather loose like that for a pancake. Pour a thin layer of batter on the hot skillet in a circular motion, covering the entire surface. As the injera starts to cook you will see little bubbles rising to the surface. Once the top of the injera is dry it is ready. You only cook one side of the injera. Note that the cooked side should not be allowed to get brown. The injera should be soft, not crispy. Let it cool down. Then serve with meat or vegetables.
Find here some Ethiopian food recipes.