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Clearly, tahini’s having a moment (and it’s easy to understand why)

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We really don’t give tahini enough credit. Sure, it adds that wonderful, creamy texture to hummus, but it’s capable of so much more than that. And people are only starting to realize that now.

According to Forbes, tahini (aka sesame butter) is becoming so popular that it’s being used to enhance different types of food all over the world. You can taste its sesame flavour baked into pastries at Zingerman’s Bakehouse in Michigan. Or, you can find it at Parallel in Toronto, where it’s being added to smoothies to make them creamy. And is it really all that surprising? If you’ve ever tasted halva — a popular Middle Eastern dessert made from tahini — you’ve know for quite a while that tahini’s a versatile ingredient that can add depth to both savoury and sweet dishes. Plus, it’s made from toasted sesame seeds, meaning that it’s a great alternative to nuts and nut butters for people with allergies.

Even Elske in Chicago — which was named the second-best, new restaurant in America last year by Bon Appetite — features a mouthwatering tahini tart on its menu, made with black and white tahini, halva crumble and chocolate sauce.

black & white tahini creams in a speculoos tart, with a halva crumble and a dark chocolate sauce

A post shared by Elske (@elskerestaurant) on

Looking to jump aboard the tahini-inspired bandwagon? Then go ahead and whip up one of these tahini-infused recipes — and no, none of them are for hummus.

Creamy Triple Seed Risotto with Roasted Asparagus

Desiree Nielsen, host of The Urban Vegetarian (Fridays at 6:30 a.m. ET) takes risotto to the next level by mixing in tahini, lemon juice and sesame oil. The result? An unforgettable risotto that’s incredibly creamy.

Melissa Quantz/www.bountyhunter.ca

Sesame and Honey Halva

As long as you have tahini and honey on hand, you can make this tasty treat almost effortlessly. All you need to do is boil some honey until it reaches 239F, stir in some tahini and then let it chill in the fridge. Curious about the taste of halva? While the flavour itself differs depending on what’s been mixed into it, the texture falls somewhere between fudge and a crumbly cookie. And who don’t love either of those?

Rachel Allen’s All Things Sweet

Green Goddess Spring Salad with Almond Ricotta

Finally, a salad that’ll actually fill you up, and keep you full until you have your next meal. Top it off with a dressing made with tahini, water, lemon juice, garlic, basil, salt and chili — it’s simply divine.

Melissa Quantz/www.bountyhunter.ca

Tahini and Chili Palmiers

Sweet and spicy has been a killer combo since before you were even born. Add tahini’s addictive sesame flavour to the mix, layer it onto a few pastries, and wait for your guests to become hooked on them.

Cook like a Chef

Still on the hunt for that perfect tahini-infused recipe? Then check out all the ways you can use up that leftover tahini.

 

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