Sesame Cookies

You know how I am – ideas get in my head and I just have to explore them to see if the reality is as good as my imagining. This time I was 100% correct, right from the start: tahini makes great cookies. If you aren’t familiar with it, tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds. Here in the States, its most common use is probably in hummus. It is not difficult to find anymore – I get it at the regular supermarket in the next town over. You can usually find it in health food stores, and surely in Middle Eastern markets. If you just can’t find it, you may want to try these using peanut butter and sesame seeds, which will not have as strong a sesame flavor, but will still be very good. This is adapted from my favorite peanut butter cookie recipe, so I know that will work.

To start, you need to toast some sesame seeds. You can buy them already toasted, I know, but it is well worth the effort to toast them yourself, because the quality will be so much better. I buy sesame seeds in bulk and keep them in the freezer to use in stir fries, breads and the occasional sesame crusted chicken breast. They will go rancid pretty quickly if you leave them in the cupboard. We are going to use 1/2 cup of them in these cookies. Put them in a dry, heavy skillet or saute pan, over medium heat. Keep stirring them and in a couple minutes, they will begin to get glossy from the oils being released. At that point, you may want to reduce the heat just a bit, to ensure they don’t get away from you and get too brown. Keep stirring until the majority of the seeds are a nice light golden tan color. Take them out of the hot pan right away, because they will keep cooking and get too done. Set them aside to cool.1scIn the bowl of your mixer, cream together:
¾ cup soft butter
½ cup tahini2scAdd, and beat until fluffy:
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
¼ cup granulated sugar
I should note that while I was really happy with the amount of sweetness, Larry though they could have been a bit sweeter, so you might want to add an additional 1/4 cup of granulated sugar.3scNext, add, and beat in well:
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract4scThen, add and beat until incorporated:
2 cups all purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ cup toasted sesame seeds5scIt will look like this:6scNow is when you get to have a bit of fun. These will turn out with different textures at the end, depending on how you shape and bake them. You can use a medium cookie scoop. I baked these for about 9 minutes.7scThese I measured with the same cookie scoop, but then I gently rolled them into balls, which I flattened with the bottom of a glass, dipped in granulated sugar. I let these go a little longer – about 11 minutes.8scThe ones left in mounds came out nicely chewy, with crisp edges.9scThe flattened ones were, of course, crisper, with a little bit darker flavor.11sc I even did a sheet of them that I let go for 13 minutes and they were very crisp.10sc Which ones you prefer is purely your own personal taste. I thought I liked the chewy ones the best at first but a couple days later, the thinner, crisper ones had a richer flavor from being cooked a little longer. In any case – they were all fantastic and this is one recipe I will certainly come back to again.12

Other recipes you may like:
Peanut Butter Cornmeal Cookies
Roasted Garlic Hummus

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16 Responses to Sesame Cookies

  1. sherri says:

    Yum. The photos are great too!

  2. Trisha says:

    I like sesame seeds . . . but I never really thought about making cookies using them. These sound wonderful!

  3. Janis says:

    That reminds me of long ago and forgotten cookies that my sister and I used to get in China town whenever we went to a Dodger game. Beside the stinking barrel of 100 year old eggs, they had these delicious sesame cookies that we always bought. They were thin, crisp, sweet and shiny. Your cookies look really good. I’d like to try them some day.

  4. Love tahini but never used it in cookies. This really looks like a novel idea, I am sure the flavor is fantastic!

    Thanks for sharing!

    CCR =:~)

  5. HoneyB says:

    These look yum! I am bookmarking these to go with my Christmas cookies :-)

  6. I adore sesame seeds so no doubt that those cookies must taste absolutely wonderful :)

    Cheers!

    Gera

  7. LyB says:

    Mmmmm… I have made tahini cookies before but not with sesame seeds in them, that sounds perfect! I will have to try these! :)

  8. Debbie Jean says:

    Looks great. Never thought of cookies with sesame seeds!!

  9. BunnygotBlog says:

    These sound so yummy and simple to make .

  10. Ruth Ann says:

    Does Riley like them? :)

  11. Kitty says:

    Never even considered it! But,… yum! I love Sesame Seeds! What a novel idea!

  12. CM says:

    Me smart – print recipe!
    Larry smart – add more sugar!!

  13. Oh wow, these look great! Definitely bookmarking this one. Yum!

    +Jessie

  14. Like a twit, I once bought sesame seeds that aren’t toasted. Personally, I think it should be illegal to even sell them. They’re tasteless. But maybe I should find a way to toast them myself so I can make these….

  15. Pingback: Honey Spice Crinkles Cookies – dlyn

  16. Pingback: Spicy Peanut Noodles | dlyn

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