Tahini...A Thousand And One Night Dip

File:Tahinijar 453g.jpg
Tahini Photo Courtesy Of Wikipedia On Google
Tahini is a paste made from Sesame seed. The oil you see floating on the top is the sesame oil which is an integral part of the tahini.  This is exactly like peanut butter where sometimes the oil floats on the top (if it is not made in U.S.A.).

Tahini is very much used in the eastern part of the Mediterranean basin from Greece Eastwards, including Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Egypt, and Iraq. Tahini is used as a complement to shish kebabs,  meat, chicken, fish, and salads and even alone as a dip in western countries by people who lived in the middle east.

Tahini is extremely good for the health and contains a number of vitamins, fiber, and other.

To make Tahini you need:
For a party of 6 as a dip.
-  1 cups of tahini will go a long way.
-  1 cup of water (depending upon the quality of the tahini).
Let's stop just a minute here to explain about the water.
Tahini by itself is too concentrated and cannot be eaten as such. You have to add water to dilute it.  However, tahini has a strange reaction towards water meaning that it curdles to the point you can hardly stir it. Working it and adding more water the mixture starts to become more fluid and homogeneous. The result is a thick creamy mixture. It should not leave a dent when you take a spoonful.
Furthermore as hours pass by, the tahini somehow "proves" and becomes thicker and thicker. Initially you should not add too much water because if you sort of go "over the hump" it will turn very liquid and the only way to make it thicker is by adding more tahini. So initially you should add water slowly until you obtain the consistency you want considering also that you still have to add at least one tablespoon of lemon juice which will make it more liquid.
-  2 cloves garlic crushed.
-  1 Tbsp. freshly ground cumin powder.
-  1 Tbsp. lemon juice.
-  1 Tbsp. olive oil.
-  Salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to taste.
-  Combine all the above in the bowl of a standing hand held mixer and start mixing on high speed to combine everything.

-  Start adding some water, mix and see how your tahini reacts.
-  If you see it thicken, then add some more water and mix.  Keep adding water until the texture stays the same ( the way you like it ).
-  At this point taste and if you like it keep it the way it is . Regulate, salt, cayenne, lemon juice, and cumin.
-  Stop when it is just right.

Water Is Also Included In This Photo I Began With ¼ cup For
1 cup Tahini, Then Went Up to One Cup at ¼ cup Intervals To Get It Right.
You Can Also See The Garlic Pieces, And The Chili Piece
It Was So Right That Oops We Ate It Before I Had The Chance
To Take A Picture!  You can See The Consistency Though.
-  If it is the first time you are making and tasting it then just follow the quantities I gave you.   If it becomes too liquid then add a wee bit more of concentrated tahini.
Enjoy with shish kebab or alone with crackers.


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