Tahini is a paste made from grounded sesame seeds that is commonly used in Middle Eastern cooking. It's the key ingredient in hummus that adds so much richness and depth to the popular bean dip. While tahini can be found in many health and ethnic food stores, it is so easy to make that I thought I would share the recipe.
1/2 cup sesame seeds
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- In a wide-surfaced saute pan, lightly toast the sesame seeds over medium heat for roughly 3-5 minutes. Stir constantly and gently rattle the pan to ensure that the seeds are evenly toasting. Once the seeds begin to brown, turn off the heat and continue stirring as they easily burn. The final product of this step should be a caramel color. Transfer to a bowl to cool before proceeding. This process will bring out the natural toasty and nutty flavors of sesame seeds.
- Once cooled, transfer the seeds to a food processor, and pulse until the sesame seeds are grounded into a fine sandy texture. The grounded seeds should start to bind together as the natural oils are released.
- Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the food processor, and continue to pulse until the olive oil is incorporated. The consistency of the tahini should be close to peanut butter. If necessary add more olive oil until you reach a desired consistency.