extra-savory tahini sauce | freekeh bowl

extra-savory tahini sauce

Wow, I can't believe that this tahini series is almost over! It's amazing how a few simple ingredients completely transform with just a few additional flavors. Over the last couple weeks, we've explored plain old lemon tahini saucetahini dressing with date syrup, herby yogurt tahini sauce, and today I've got one more: extra-savory tahini sauce with cumin, coriander, and crushed garlic. The flavors in this one also work really well with the flavors in the herby yogurt tahini sauce, so feel free to experiment and mix things up. I've also included a "recipe" for the above grain bowl, which pairs perfectly with this extra-savory sauce.

extra-savory tahini sauce

extra-savory tahini sauce

download a PDF to print

  • 1/4 cup tahini

  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 3 tablespoons water

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander

  • 1 clove garlic, crushed through a press

Whisk everything together until it smooths out into a salad dressing.

freekeh bowl with savory tahini sauce

Make slow roast tomatoes (or sauté mushrooms until they're deeply golden brown). Boil freekeh in salted water until al dente. Strain and rinse a can of chickpeas. Use a sheet pan to roast some sweet potatoes until golden brown on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Add some leafy greens (kale, Chinese broccoli, etc.) to the sheet pan in the last few minutes of cooking, just so that they wilt. Don't forget to season everything and use some oil for roasting! Serve together in a bowl and drizzle with extra-savory tahini sauce.

The best way to turn this into an easy weeknight meal is to make a bunch of slow roast tomatoes ahead of time, and then freeze them in bulk. They're the perfect thing to make this summer, when you find really cheap in-season tomatoes at grocery stores and farmers' markets. They shrink down to 1/6 their original size, and you can flat-pack them in ziplock bags, so they take up very little freezer space, and they last forever.

more serving inspiration

  • Serve in a falafel sandwich, or serve as a sauce with your falafel platter.

  • Serve with shawarma.

  • Drizzle over roast veggies, especially fall veggies.

  • Drizzle over grilled chicken breast or London broil.

  • Drizzle over your favorite grain bowl (like the one above).

tahini lemon sauce

herby tahini yogurt sauce | broiled salmon and greens

tahini yogurt sauce

Today, as the third part of my tahini series, I've got a delicious recipe for herby tahini yogurt sauce, which might just be the most adaptable one of all. Yogurt sauces in general are a wonderful tool for balancing out a dish that's a little too heavy and rich. For instance, take my za'atar chickpeas and yellow rice with jajik. The rice is flavored with plenty of lovely spices, and you end up with fluffy distinct grains, which is exactly what you're looking for in a perfect pot of basmati. And the roast chickpeas have a wonderfully crisp za'atar crust. But, as delicious as they are, these two components are quite dense and dry on their own, so I included a yogurt sauce to balance things out.

That doesn't mean that distinct grains of rice and crispy roast chickpeas are somehow unappetizing, but at the end of the day, they have less moisture, which is something to think about when deciding what else to add to them. In other words, their dryness isn't a problem to be fixed—in fact, it's an asset. Without it, there would be no za'atar crust, and the rice would be a mushy blob. The yogurt sauce simply brings out their best qualities.

Plain old yogurt sauce is wonderful in its own right, but tahini yogurt sauce is perfect for when you want to add creaminess and brightness, but with some of the richness of tahini lemon sauce. It's delicious anywhere you'd use a buttermilk dressing, but it has a lot more depth of flavor. Ladle it over anything that's too heavy for tahini lemon sauce, but too light for a plain yogurt sauce. It's particularly phenomenal on all things grilled, like this broiled salmon with sautéed greens.

yogurt tahini sauce

herby tahini yogurt sauce

download a PDF to print

1/4 cup tahini
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons water
Slightly heaping 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 cup plain whole milk Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons minced herbs (any combination of parsley, mint, dried mint, cilantro, and/or dill)
Optional: 1 clove garlic crushed through a press

Whisk everything together until it smooths out and emulsifies.

salmon with herby tahini yogurt sauce

Season salmon fillets with salt, and then steam, grill, or broil them (they're pictured here broiled). Top with tahini yogurt sauce, garnish with extra herbs, and serve alongside steamed or sautéed greens and lemon wedges.

more serving inspiration

  • Dark leafy greens, e.g. broccoli, kale, collards, etc.

  • Roast veggies, especially asparagus, brussels sprouts, green beans, carrots, potatoes, and legumes

  • Anywhere you'd use a creamy dressing (like ranch, buttermilk, blue cheese, or mayo-based dressings), e.g. cobb salad or cole slaw

  • While classic tahini sauce adds richness to a dish, herby tahini yogurt sauce is more on the refreshing side. Serve it with dishes that tend toward rich and/or dry (e.g. biryani, chicken breast, and lean fish).

  • It also goes great with the classics, like falafel and shawarma.

salmon with herby tahini yogurt sauce