It’s sad that so often we think that foods aren’t going to taste good, just because they are lacking “normal” ingredients. People often act like vegan food is going to be a disgusting pile of mush. Far from it! Vegan food can be amazingly flavorful and have wonderful texture, without eggs, dairy or meat products. Gluten free foods, though, are a little more hit and miss, in my opinion.
The prepackaged stuff I’ve tried is usually pretty good, but trying to recreate things from scratch hasn’t gone to well here in my househould. The good thing is that we do not need to be gluten free here. None of us have celiac or a wheat intolerance. I have noticed, however, that I feel way better if I limit the amount of gluten, specifically wheat, in my diet. For the most part, I just cut such foods out of my diet and didn’t bother with finding replacements. I don’t miss pasta, but at times, I do crave a good piece of toast.
I make lots of pancakes for Little Dude. I put all sorts of fruits and veggies in them and he chows down like there’s no tomorrow. It’s one of my ways of sneaking some extra nutrients into his diet.
I came across this recipe the other day and decided to give it a whirl. It was easy (requirement #1) and tasted good (requirement #2), and it even earned his seal of approval (bonus #1). He asked for seconds both mornings. Major score! Now . . . I will say this . . . they are great right off the griddle and reheat easily for convenience in the toaster (requirement #3), however they are a little on the dry side on those subsequent mornings. It’s nothing that a drizzle of maple syrup can’t fix, though.
These pancakes are made with teff flour, rather than regular ole wheat flour. Teff is a teeny tiny grain from Ethiopia that is surprisingly packed with nutrients. It is used primarily for making injera, a type of sponge bread used to eat the various stew-like dishes in Ethiopia and Eritrea.
Teff is resilient, and can grow just about anywhere, in any conditions. It is the perfect crop for an area of the world that is not known for great weather. It is high in calcium and resistant starch, a type of fiber that aids in weight loss and blood sugar management. (For more information, check out this article.) It is also high in all of the B vitamins except for B12 (darn), and in protein.
Eating teff might not make you a superstar runner, but it’s a great addition to any diet – especially for someone on a gluten free or vegan diet.
(adapted from active.com)
1 flax egg (1 T flax meal mixed with 3 T water) or an egg, if you swing that way
3/4 c almond, soy, rice milk (or milk of choice)
2 T canola oil (or melted butter)
1 c teff flour
1 1/2 T agave nectar
3 T baking powder
1/2 t salt
optional mix-ins: mini chocolate chips, blueberries, banana slices, etc
Mix flax meal with water for 1 minute. Set aside to rest for 5 minutes. (If using the egg, beat until fluffy.)
Mix together the almond milk, oil and agave nectar. Add in the flax egg. Add all of this to the teff, baking powder an salt until combined.
Heat a griddle or frying pan on medium heat and lightly coat with oil. (I highly recommend using a well-seasoned cast iron skillet.) Drop by large spoonfuls on the griddle. Flip when the top look likes it is starting to dry out, and some bubbles form. Be careful not to break them! Cook 3-4 minutes more.
Serve with some real maple syrup and top with some fruit!