For a long time, I was on a serious tahini kick. I had virtually replaced all nut and seed butter consumption in my life with tahini. But then, I moved here. After purchasing several brands of locally available tahini that didn’t even come close to my beloved Joyva, I lost my drive to find a suitable replacement.
Then I started making my own nut butters and the rest, as they say, is history. Weirdly enough, I have never even thought to make my own tahini until right now. Though I still have 2 jars of this in the pantry, so I won’t be attempting that any time soon.
Lior Tahini is made in Israel, so you know it’s good.
The Israelis invented tahini, you know. Unless you are talking to a Greek person, then they invented it. Or a Lebanese person, who also claim to have been the tahini front-runners.
Wow, who knew there was such a heated worldwide debate over the origin of a humble ground seed? (Me, that’s who.)
I got this tahini on Amazon, for under $16 for a 4 pack, making it a screaming deal and probably far cheaper than a DIY version, so for the sake of my dish-pan hands, I’m passing on the DIY tahini for the time being.
I was skeptical that it would pass my discerning taste buds, but this is the real deal. The ingredients list: 100% Ground Pure Sesame Seeds. <- I can get down with that kind of a list.
It doesn’t say whether they are roasted or not, but judging by the taste, I would say that they are. There is just the slightest hint of bitterness (raw seeds tend to be very bitter). I usually add 1/2 tsp or so of table salt when I open a jar and stir it in. The salt neutralizes what little bitterness remains and makes it more palatable on its own.
Because you know I’m eating this stuff straight from the jar.
However, more than with any of my other nut and seed butter loves, tahini is more often than not an ingredient in something else.
Most often, I use it in one of my many vegetable-based sauces. It makes a great sub for the cashew butter in this Caribbean Corn Sauce and is a requirement in any middle eastern dish, especially hummus or baba gannouj.
(Side note: There was a company that sold hummus and baba at the farmers market in Flagstaff that advertised “No Tahini Added” as though this were a marketable selling point! You better believe I turned up my nose and scoffed at the $8 price tag.)
It turns out that tahini also makes a great butter replacement in baking. Kind of like peanut butter, it gives cookies a bnice fluffy texture, without becoming cakey, and without sacrificing the fat “mouthfeel” that is pretty much crucial to a good cookie.
I have found that with most people, they either love it or they hate it.
I’ve yet to meet someone who hates cookies though. So, if you know someone who claims to hate tahini, make them these cookies, watch them love them, and laugh inwardly at your deviousness.
Maple Cardamom Tahini Cookies
- 3 T tahini
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup granulated sugar (I used erythritol
- 1/2 tsp maple extract
- 1/8 – 1/4 tsp cardamom (I used 1/4 tsp, but they were very cardamom-y so you may want to use less)
- 1/8 tsp allspice
- 1/3 cup oat flour
- 1/3 cup coconut flour
- 1 T cornstarch
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 T almond milk (or other non-dairy milk; may need to add up to 2 T more)