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- Sesamum Indicum
The delicate, nutty taste of these tiny, oval, flat seeds is often enjoyed in Asian and Middle Eastern dishes. Try them folded into bread or cookie batter, sprinkled on steamed vegetables, and ground with sea salt as a table condiment. Roast them to enhance their flavor.
By the way... Sesame seeds are a good source of calcium and other nutrients. You can buy the seeds whole, unhulled, and hulled. Storage: These seeds have a high oil content, and although the oil is relatively stable while the seed is intact, refrigeration will slow the oxidation process and prolong the life of the seed.
Widely enjoyed in Middle Eastern and Asian cooking, sesame seeds have a nutty, earthy aroma and taste-- which is enhanced by roasting. The seeds are often sprinkled over cakes and breads. In Syria and Lebanon, they're mixed with thyme and sumac to make a condiment called zatar. And in the Mediterranean, a tahini paste is made from the seeds. Sesame seeds are also an important ingredient in halvah (a Jewish sweet). In India the seeds are ground and used for flavor and thickening in spiced dishes. In China they're popular in stir-fries and oils.
Try sesame seeds sprinkled on grains and steamed vegetables, and stir them into bread batters. Gomasio-- a delicious condiment to be sprinkled on dishes before serving-- is also made with roasted sesame seeds. To make your own, simply grind together roasted sesame seeds and natural sea salt (in whatever proportions suit your taste).