We now stock teff flakes! I was really looking forward to diving into an experiment with our new gluten free teff flakes. I'd never eaten them, nor cooked with them before.
The obvious use for teff flakes is porridge, or adding them to a cake or muffin batter. But I was feeling daring and intrepid…I wanted to push the boat out a little. So, taking inspiration from their breadcrumb-like texture, I decided to use teff flakes as a substitute for breadcrumbs.
Not satisfied with that alone, I thought I'd make them completely gluten-free. Go hard or go home, right?
Luckily for us all, the experiment was a success. The combination of rice flour, cornstarch, carbonated water and teff flakes made for a delightfully light, deafeningly crunchy tempura batter. It's a winner!
Oil for frying - you'll need a fair amount, say 200ml
3/4 cup rice flour (white or brown) - plus ½ cup extra for coating prior to cooking.
1/2 cup cornstarch,
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup sparkling water, chilled
1 cup teff flakes
Approx 3 cups chilled, chopped vegetables of choice. I used what I had on hand:
White sweet potato
You could also use:
sweet potato sticks, eggplant sticks, broccoli florets, zucchini slices or capsicum slices, carrot sticks
Cut veggies into thinnish sticks or slices. Par-cook the denser veggies like pumpkin, sweet potato and carrot, by simmering for 1 or 2 mins in salted water. Place them into a bowl of iced water to chill them while you're preparing the batter.
Line a large plate with paper towels; set aside.
Add the extra ½ cup of rice flour to a large mixing bowl. Add veggies to it, and toss carefully, so they are well coated in the rice flour.
Now get a 2nd large bowl and make your batter: Add the rice flour, cornstarch, salt, and baking soda to the bowl. Pour the cold sparkling water into the flour mixture gradually and whisk until thoroughly combined.
In a heavy-based wok or deep sided frypan, add about 2cm cooking oil. Bring it up to a high heat - if the oil starts smoking, it's too hot!
Using metal tongs, dip the floured items into the batter and slowly lower them into the hot oil. Do not let go of them until they are cooked enough not to stick to the bottom of the pan, about 30 seconds. Release them into the oil and continue to cook for about 2 - 2 ½ minutes or until crisp. (Don't overcrowd the pan, otherwise they won't crisp up)
Use the tongs to remove each piece of veg as soon as it turns lightly golden then transfer them to the paper-towel-lined plate.
Serve hot with sauce of choice. I like soy sauce mixed with a little mirin.