13 Uses of Sesame Seeds
Sesame seeds are tiny, oval shaped seeds that are a little nutty in taste and give a slight crunch when you eat them. They are available in different colors – white, black or even yellow – even though the taste difference is negligible. Sesame seeds can be had roasted, added raw to recipes or turned into a paste. They are used in Asian cuisines along with Indian and Middle Eastern.
1. Sesame seeds are used extensively in Indian, Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines.
2. Sesame oil is extracted from sesame seeds which is sometimes used in cooking or even as a condiment in some parts of the world.
3. In India, sesame seeds are used to make a variety of dishes whether sweet or savory, as a main ingredient or as a garnish.
4. During the festival of Makar Sankrant, til mixed with jaggery is used to make sweets like Ladoos and Chikkis. The crispy chikkis and ladoosgive an excellent mouth feel and are way of celebrating this festival. A similar preparation is also made in North India during a festival called Sakat Chauth as an offering to God.
5. They form an essential part of the after meal snack, Mukhwas, which is basically just a mouth freshener and a digestive aid. Apart from this, sesame seeds also form an essential part of the Curry leaves chutney powder which is served along with idli and dosa.
6. In Indian food it can be used in three ways – As a part of the main ingredients of the dish; as a topping or as part of the tadka. As a tadka, sesame seeds are added to hot oil and poured over Khandvis and Dhoklas. As a topping, black sesame seeds are used on naans and parathas. They also form one of the main ingredients in Hyderabadi Baghara Baingan or Bajra Bhakri, a south Indian delicacy.
7. Sesame seeds are used a lot in Gujarati cuisine, especially for garnishing. They are used to garnish muthias, dhoklas, patra, handvo and many more delicacies.
8. In the middle-east, Sesame seeds are roasted and grinded up with olive oil to form tahini. Tahini is used as a dip in its own capacity and is a major component of hummus and other Middle Eastern foods. Tahini based sauces are very common to dress different dishes like dan dan noodles.
9. Another middle-eastern dish that uses sesame paste is Baba ganoush. This dish uses roasted Aubergine (eggplant), garlic, ground cumin, lemon juice and salt. Further it is also used as a spread on bread.
10. Raw sesame seeds are used in different Asian cuisines from Chinese, Japanese to Thai and Vietnamese. In Japan they are used to garnish sushi, in Chinese cuisine they are added to soy sauce to make a dipping sauce or filled in dumplings. Sesame seeds provide a unique nutty flavor to Vietnamese stir fries and salads.
11. In the western countries, sesame seeds are used to dress artisanal breads. Almost all bagels have toasted sesame seeds on them as a topping. Even McDonalds uses sesame seeds on all their burger buns.
12. Sesame seeds create heat in your body, making them ideal for winters.
13. They can be eaten plain or toasted with a little black salt.