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6 ways to cook with sesame seeds

6 ways to cook with sesame seeds

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The latest series of Jamie’s Super Food, saw him head to South Korea to discover the nation’s healthy eating secrets.

South Korea has very low obesity rates – just 6%, compared to 25% in Britain. Nuts and seeds are a super-important part of a healthy, balanced diet, and Koreans eat five times as many sesame seeds than we do here in the UK.


These super seeds are a source of B vitamins which are good for keeping our metabolism healthy, and they contain phosphorus, which helps to maintain our bones and teeth. Seeds are also high in unsaturated fat, which helps to lower cholesterol. Replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats, such as the kinds found in sesame seeds, could therefore help protect against coronary heart disease.

Tuck into these simple suggestions below for more ways to include beneficial sesame seeds in your diet. From baking to salads and dressings to seafood, these seeds are so versatile, and should be an essential in any kitchen store cupboard.


Miso, ginger, spring onions, noodles and prawns come together here in a beautiful, colourful, good-for-you dish.

Coat salmon fillets in sesame seeds before dry-frying them and serving them up on a bed of noodles, with a zingy tahini and lime dressing.

Roast a tray of kale leaves with a handful of sesame seeds for a tasty, healthy snack.


Lorraine Pascale’s delicious spelt flour pretzels are perfectly finished off with a generous sprinkling of sesame seeds.

Pack in extra goodness to your homemade loaf with mixed seeds. This protein bread is a brilliant start to the day.

This bright and fresh salad of squid, prawns and octopus tastes delicious tossed in the sharp yuzu, soy and sesame dressing.

For more tasty and nutritious meals for the family, head to Jamie’s Family Food hub.

How to Toast Sesame Seeds

Sesame seeds are one thing, but toasted sesame seeds? Quite another altogether! Toasting sesame seeds brings out their natural nutty flavor even more: and it makes them even crunchier. Alex and I almost always toast sesame seeds before we use them. They’re perfect on Asian noodle dishes like a soba bowl or coating sushi, but they also work in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine like sprinkling on hummus or falafel. Even better: it only takes a few minutes! Here’s how to toast sesame seeds: two ways.

Sesame Snap Pea-Chicken Salad

David Malosh for The New York Times. Food Stylist: Simon Andrews.

This simple salad features crisp-tender sugar snap peas, delicate shredded chicken and creamy sesame dressing. The cooking methods are important here: Blanching the peas, then shocking them in ice water ensures that they retain crunch and color, while gently poaching the boneless chicken breast and plunging it into an ice water bath means it stays moist. The tangy dressing, which is a nod to the highly addictive Japanese-style goma dressing, is made with earthy roasted sesame seeds and mayonnaise it finds its way to the craggy edges of the shredded chicken. Try to shred the meat the same size as the sliced peas for the best texture. This salad is great to serve immediately, and even better after spending at least an hour in the refrigerator.

Sesame and honey cookies

Speedy and charming little biscuits that make an ideal bed partner for your hot beverage of choice!
JB Bady, Balfour Castle,

Makes 15-20
40g butter, softened
120ml vegetable oil
50g honey
1 egg
190g plain flour
75g sesame seeds, toasted
1 tsp baking powder
40g pistachios, roughly crushed

1 Preheat the oven to 175C/350F/gas mark 4. In a bowl, cream together the butter, oil and honey until smooth.

2 Beat in the egg, then add the flour, sesame seeds, baking powder and pistachios and stir to combine.

3 Drop the dough in small ball shapes on to a nonstick baking tray. Bake for 9-12 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool a few minutes on the baking tray.

16 Delicious Ways to Cook With Tahini

It may be an ancient food, but tahini—also known as sesame paste—is enjoying a major renaissance right now. Fans of Middle Eastern food may know it best as the stuff they drizzle on falafel. But thanks to chefs like Yotam Ottolenghi and Einat Admony (not to mention countless food writers and bloggers) making creative use of tahini, it's clear that the possibilities are virtually endless.

What is Tahini? Tahini is sesame paste, made by grinding up sesame seeds until a smooth, peanut butter-like consistency forms. It's nutty, creamy, and oily, and is commonly used in Middle Eastern cooking. Lately, it's become popular the world over in salad dressings, baking, sauces, and more.

Where to Get Top-Notch Tahini: Middle Eastern Markets, specialty grocers, and health food stores are good sources for tahini, but most supermarkets stock the ingredient now. You can typically find it with other Middle Eastern products, next to the peanut butter, or sometimes in the fridge area. A little oil separation is fine and proof that your tahini is all natural and free of emulsifiers. Simply stir it up when you're ready to use it to combine the oil and paste.

How to Cook With Tahini: When baking, tahini is typically used in the same way as peanut butter, adding a mildly nutty flavor. It can easily be whisked into sauces and dressings, but keep in mind that adding acid, such as lemon juice, will cause tahini to thicken rapidly. Adding a little warm water will thin it to the proper consistency.

You can also make your own tahini with sesame seeds, oil, and a good blender. For ideas on how to use sesame paste, we've got a wide range of recipes that are sure to make you a tahini fan.

Recipe Summary

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 8 bone-in chicken thighs (2 3/4 pounds), skinned
  • Cooking spray
  • ¼ cup lower-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 5 teaspoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons sliced green onions

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan swirl to coat. Add chicken cook 4 minutes on each side or until golden. Transfer chicken to a 4-quart electric slow cooker coated with cooking spray.

Combine soy sauce and next 5 ingredients (through garlic) pour over chicken. Cover and cook on LOW for 2 1/2 hours or until chicken is tender. Transfer chicken to a platter keep warm.

Pour cooking liquid through a sieve into a small saucepan to measure 1 1/4 cups. Discard solids. Bring cooking liquid to a boil over medium-high heat. Combine cornstarch and 1 tablespoon cold water in a small bowl. Add cornstarch mixture to sauce, stirring with a whisk until blended. Return to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until sauce thickens, stirring constantly. Serve sauce over chicken. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and green onions.

Dates get even more Middle Eastern, dunked in tahini.

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  • Dark soy sauce: This can be found in the International Isle in the grocery store or Asian supermarket stores.
  • Low sodium soy sauce: Helps to keep the salt level down in this recipe.
  • Light brown sugar: Adds the perfect amount of sweetness to the sauce!
  • Sesame oil: All you need is a little bit to add a nice toasted nuttiness to the sauce.
  • Garlic: I always love to use garlic in my stir frys!
  • Bell pepper: I used a red bell pepper however you can do a mix of colors
  • Cornstarch: Added with water the cornstarch thickens up the sauce.

One of the best things about this Sesame Beef is the sauce! The sauce consists of brown sugar, dark soy sauce, regular soy sauce and water. I use half of the sauce as a marinade and the other half to cook with the beef.

The trick to this dish is cooking the steak quickly over high heat. It gets a nice sear on the outside but stays nice and juicy on the inside.

6-Taste Wild Rice Bowl

This wild rice bowl with mashed roasted beets, avocado, beet green salad, baked broccoli, walnut pate, and French mustard/ginger dressing is sure to balance all of your six tastes.

    3 small broccoli, stalks peeled

  • 1/3 cup walnuts, lightly toasted
  • 2 sundried tomatoes in olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons toasted CCF (cumin, coriander, and fennel seeds), partially ground
  • 10 sage leaves
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon fine chopped cilantro
  • pinch fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons CCF mix
  • 1 teaspoon coconut amino acids
  • pinch of salt

Directions for the Walnut Pate

Place the walnuts in a blender, then add olive oil, sundried tomatoes, CCF mix, sage leaves, some black pepper, and a pinch of salt. Blend to a rough paste.

Directions for the Dressing

Mix all the dressing ingredients well with a whisk and leave on one side in a bowl.

Directions for the Wild Rice Bowl

Bake the broccoli for 40 minutes, then add a sprinkling of olive oil, lemon juice, and salt/fresh ground black pepper.

Add both types of rice to a saucepan and cover with 2.75 cups filtered water. Bring to a boil, add salt, then simmer until all the liquid has been absorbed. Turn off the heat, put a lid on the pan, and keep warm.

Peel and mash the cooked beets and add black pepper, coconut aminos, dried basil, lemon juice, and seasoning (Himalayan salt and fresh ground black pepper).

Place portions of the rice, beets, broccoli, avocado, walnut pate, and greens in a wide bowl. Drizzle the dressing over it, then garnish with some sunflower sprouts and serve.

Is it safe to eat raw ahi tuna?

If you&rsquore nervous about eating raw fish, you should use your best judgement. You can always choose to cook these ahi tuna steaks all the way through to be well-done.

But tuna steaks are usually served seared on the outside and raw on the inside. Look up any seared ahi tuna recipe and you will see that it is almost always cooked this way. If you order it a restaurant, it&rsquos bound to be cooked medium-rare as well.

I&rsquod recommend getting over your fears and jumping on this bandwagon (unless you&rsquore pregnant or have another medical reason not to consume raw fish). Fully cooked tuna can be a bit dry (like its canned counterpart), but when the outside is a crispy, salty, savory layer and the inside is a supple, soft, tender layer, it enhances the taste so much and the texture is amazing.

Plus, many of the bacteria that makes raw foods more risky to eat is usually found on the surface of the foods. If you sear the outside, as in this recipe, you&rsquore killing off the bacteria that may make you sick. Same goes for a good seared steak.

Combine oil, honey, pepper, garlic, and ginger in small bowl set aside.

Adjust oven rack to middle position heat oven to 450 degrees F. Line rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil spread beans on baking sheet. Drizzle with oil using hands, toss to coat evenly. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt, toss to coat, and distribute in even layer. Roast 10 minutes.

Remove baking sheet from oven. Using tongs, coat beans evenly with garlic/ginger mixture redistribute in even layer. Continue roasting until dark golden brown in spots and starting to shrivel, 10 to 12 minutes longer.

Adjust seasoning with salt and and toss well to combine. Transfer to serving dish, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve.



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