• Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Anonymous Modernist 15340

The science of injera, the East-African flat bread

2 posts in this topic

Hello there,

This is a tricky one, I promise! :)

Injera is a flat bread mostly prepared in Ethiopia and Eritrea. It's a very spongy, but not rubbery, and it has a nice sour taste.

Originally it is done with teff, which is a local crop in that region, and it has the property of not containing any gluten (this explains the lack of rubbery texture I suppose).

It is prepared mixing teff flour (sometimes mixed with sorghum flour, to save on the precious teff) with water, forming a liquid but dense batter. Something similar to a pancake batter in terms of viscosity.

No yeast is added, but it will be left to rest and ferment for something between 3 days and a week.

After that some hot water is added one hour before the final step, which is cooking injera.

The procedure is illustrated in this video:

As a curious engineer, with an Eritrean mother, I've always been fascinated by this flat bread and I tried to replicate the results without using teff, but with no success so far.

I manage to get the bubbles right (sometimes), but the texture of my injera is always very rubbery, no matter what kind of method I use to try to get rid of it (toasting the wheat flour before using it for the batter, or using an immersion blender on the batter).

Any suggestion is most welcome! :)

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeast is everywhere. While it's not added by you the bread picks some up before it can ferment. The fermentation is what will add the bubbles. Most flavors from it will typically burn out during cooking. I'm thinking lactic acid would be one of the things that could last through the fire.

It's rubbery here at our Ethiopia restaurants so I don't have a good idea of the texture you're going for. Reading around online about 'rubbery breads' people are posting different types of solutions. From adding more water to going with better yeast.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Similar Content

    • By borgr
      I want to leave my sourdough (itself, not baked loaves of sourdough bread) for a while (going abroad) but I do not want it to die, can I leave it in the freezer? do you have other ideas?
    • By hazardnc
      Having no local Arabic bakery, I have long hoped to learn to make good khoubz at home. Every time I try, however, my bread is too stiff and tough. I have been successfully making other breads using The Bread Baker's Apprentice, and now wonder if my bread woule benefit from an overnight ferment in the refrigerator.
      FoodMan (and anyone) can you help me?
    • By FrogPrincesse
      San Diego has a small number of artisanal bread bakeries. Bread & Cie has been my favorite for years, and their breads are now available in many supermarkets, which is very convenient. But it's nice to have some variety. So I was excited to spot a new bakery this weekend in Linda Vista. It's called Pacific Time and it is also a sandwich place with a small market with things like small-batch preserves, local beers, a cheese counter, charcuterie platters, and wine. It's located within a recently renovated strip mall that also hosts Brew Mart & Ballast Point.
      The bread I bought was a French-type rustic boule, dark, a bit reminiscent of Poilane but less dense. The crust could have been a little more crispy (it felt like the bread had sat around a little bit and softened in the paper bag), but the flavor was wonderful.


      Here is the bread:
    • By Lisa Shock
      The team over at Modernist Cuisine announced today that their next project will be an in-depth exploration of bread. I personally am very excited about this, I had been hoping their next project would be in the baking and pastry realm. Additionally, Francisco Migoya will be head chef and Peter Reinhart will assignments editor for this project which is expected to be a multi-volume affair.
    • By Chris Hennes
      The folks behind Modernist Cuisine have announced a projected publication date of March 2017 for their new five-volume set on bread (previously discussed here). Start saving up now!
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.