Now that you know how tahini is made, the different varieties you find, its health benefits and how to store it, it’s time to get down to the really good stuff. How to use tahini!
- How to Use Tahini -
I find that hulled tahini works best for dressings and sauces because it adds a creamy, light, earthy flavor to dishes without overpowering them or adding a bitter finish. If you’re looking to replace cream in sauces or soups, light roast hulled tahini – along with some nutritional yeast and touch of salt – does an excellent job.
When a small amount of water is added to tahini, the tahini becomes thicker rather than thinner, until the water to tahini ratio is far exceeded! Because of this helpful characteristic, tahini is a wonderful healthy thickener for any dressing or sauce. If you add too much though, dressings can become bitter, so start with approximately one part tahini to two parts liquid (water, vinegar etc.) and experiment from there.
The type of tahini you choose to use for desserts really depends on which dessert you’re making. But like any nut or seed butter, tahini adds rich body and flavor to creamy desserts. If you’re making your own vegan chocolate, fudge, or are simply looking for something yummy to drizzle over your frozen bananas, tahini can be a wonderful addition.
Thicker tahinis such as raw or dark roast add not only flavor, but body and texture. Lighter smoother tahinis, such as hulled light roast, will add a creamy subtler flavor to desserts.
If you’re looking to veganize a chowder or creamy soup, tahini may be the key. When blended with potatoes, squash, carrots or miso, it makes a wonderful base for any soup. I usually add approximately ¼ cup tahini for each six cups of water to begin a creamy broth. Don’t just dump the tahini into your soup and expect it to dissolve in the water though. Mix your tahini with a cup or two of soup and give it a whirl in your mixer before adding it back to the pot. You’ll be surprised how creamy and comforting the soup becomes with this simple addition. Follow the directions listed in “Dressing/Sauces” to use tahini to replace cream in recipes.
One of the things tahini does best is bind ingredients together. It helps make grain into burgers and adds extra oomph to an egg-less omelet and it doesn’t take much to do it! Tahini can help bind dishes together with as little as 2 tablespoons per 5 cups of ingredients.
The thicker tahinis, such as dark roast or raw, do the best job of binding ingredients together, but the light roast will work as well.
There are no set rules* for using and enjoy tahini on a daily basis, so feel free to experiment, and enjoy the talents of tahini!
*Tahini does have a good deal of fat in it, but mostly the good kind. Simply use your best judgment on how much to enjoy on a daily basis.
Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may
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