It is wonderful to have such a great choice of tahini brands living in Greece. Tahini has an old tradition and history. It is even called the Elixir of Health and Beauty. I try to always have a jar on the kitchen shelf.
The history of sesame reaches long ago as it has been cultivated for 5000 years. Hippocrates emphasised its high nutritional value and contribution to our overall well-being. The Chinese used it to control metabolism and the Persians included it in their medicinal remedies. Its value also becomes apparent from the fact that the Assyrians used it in commercial transactions as currency of value equal to silver!
# The nutritional value of tahini shows it to be rich in Vitamin E, Vitamin B, calcium, selenium and zinc.
# 11 vitamins contained in sesame and its by-products (tahini and halva) boost the immune system and slow down the aging process.
# Fatty acids, Vitamin E and sesamine contained in tahini lower cholesterol levels and protect against arteriosclerosis and heart attacks.
# Sesame is rich in antioxidant agents (Vitamin E, selenium, sterols) protects cells from free radicals.
# Sesamin cobtains Anticarcinogenic, especially against breast cancer.
# We can definitely call it a Beauty elixir, as sesame oil, contained at 55% in tahini, is rich in Vitamin E, which protects the skin from environmental damages and it is also used in cosmetics thanks to its firming properties. Vitamin B inhibits the appearance of wrinkles while trace elements like selenium and zinc help fight off free radicals. Furthermore, both vitamins prevent hair loss and contribute to the overall health of our hair.
# It has properties preventing mental diseases: Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease and Cataract. Vitamin B also contributes the good function of the metabolism and the peptic system, while, combined with sesame, it also helps the good function of the liver.
# It is an excellent source of healthy plant origin protein which is importantfor pregnant and breast feeding women and growing children.
Since few years my favorite brand is the one that packs tahini into octangular shaped jars. Those I like to keep and reuse for herbs, spices, condiments… It has a truly particular taste!
Turmeric is another very precious ingredient used since ages ago, especially in Asia and is known as medicine, apart from its amazingly deep yellow color and enriching food with a special flavor.
What makes turmeric so healing is curcumin. It is the principle curcuminoid, a compound in turmeric that gives it its yellow color and is also responsible for the amazing health benefits. The percentage of curcumin in turmeric varies depending on type – medicinal or aromatic, as well as where it was grown, and how it was processed. Some percentage of curcumin is lost during the heating process when making turmeric powder, which is why raw turmeric is very healthy.
Some of turmeric properties:
# In traditional Chinese and Indian Ayurveda medicine, turmeric is used to treat arthritis.
# Curcumin has beneficial effects on several factors known to play a role in heart disease.
# Curcumin leads to several changes on the molecular level that may help prevent and perhaps even treat cancer.
# Curcumin improves the pathological process of Alzheimer’s disease.
# Curcumin stimulates the gallbladder to produce more bile, which aids digestion.
# Curcumin is a very promising new therapeutic option for the treatment of gastrointestinal and hepatic diseases for which present therapies are largely unsatisfactory.
# Curcumin alleviates the symptoms of depression.
# Turmeric as First Aid: Turmeric is used to treat wounds, cuts, rashes, bruises, insect bites, and swelling.
3 tsp tahini
1/3 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 drop pure cinammon essential oil (gives a soft warming touch and helps to fight candida overgrowth if needed)
pinch of rock / Himalayan salt
juice of half lemon
a bit of water
Start with tahini, turmeric, cinnamon oil, salt and lemon juice placing them in a wide glass or a small bowl. Stir with a fork. You will notice the mass becoming very thick, which happened because of the lemon juice. Here you may add a bit of water and stir more. Add as much water as thick / liquid you like it to be. Mine usually remains quite thick as I find it more delicious.
A little secret: if you prepare it in advance, during the ours passing it will become more and more yellow and Curcumin will work with the oil in tahini.
You may add this dressing to you salads or meals. It is delicious with steamed veggies, like broccoli and even soups or stews. You may like to use it as a spread on a slice of bread or as a dip for chopped veggies.
The yellow color makes you feel warm not only physically, but emotionally as well.