What is Tahini and Why Eat it?
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A couple months ago, I was scrolling through Pinterest and searching for recipes and the word “tahini” kept popping up. At first, I just ignored it, but I saw it enough times that my curiosity was piqued and I had to know more. Like most of my blog posts, I get ideas for things to write about from my own life. Since I didn’t know what it was and why it is used, I figure there are others out there who want to know the same thing. SO here you go!
Tahini is a nut-butter-like condiment that is made by toasting hulled sesame seeds and grinding them into a paste like substance, then adding oil to create a smooth sauce. You can eat it alone, but most of the time, it’s served with other things. Whether you know what Tahini is or not, you’ve probably consumed it unknowingly in items like hummus and baba ghanoush! I bought mine from Whole Foods, but if you want to try your hand at making it yourself, I always trust the Minimalist Baker. Her recipe is here.
Now that you know what it is, why the heck should you eat it? For starters it is vegan, gluten free and a great (and somewhat healthier!) alternative to peanut butter, but it is so much more than that! Here are some benefits, to name a few:
Good source of healthy fats
Contains essential vitamins and minerals that can assist in copper and iron deficiency
Aids in regulating blood pressure
Assists in balancing hormones (It supports progesterone levels in the luteal phase, which is why it is a great option for seed cycling)
Rewinds the aging process zinc and collagen
Boosts nutrient absorption
Helps decrease inflammation
Okay now you know all this stuff, but how do you use it besides a dip or a spread?! The first time I ever used Tahini was in these Spicy Potato Kale Bowls w/ Mustard Tahini Dressing. They were realllllly good (Nick approved) and kept us feeling full. So often when we eat “healthier”, we end up hungry by 9 pm. #notgood Anyway, I knew how to use Tahini in savory dishes or as a salad dressing, but I wanted to try my hand at something sweet. I found this recipe for Salted Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookies and I was S O L D.
In my opinion, Tahini is pretty bitter - I don’t enjoy eating it alone. To be quite frank, I wasn’t sure if I’d like these cookies, because even the dough wasn’t as sweet as it would be in a cookie without Tahini. I WAS WRONG. These cookies are yummy and they don’t require refrigeration pre-bake. #Hallelujah The Tahini kind of gives them a shortbread flavor? It’s hard to describe. I guess you’ll just have to try them out for yourself 😉
Had you heard of Tahini / did you know what it is good for?! Any favorite recipes? Send them my way!!