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Tahini treat!

December 3, 2010

This ain’t for the faint-hearted. Nor is it for those who just like tahini “kinda”. This is for the serious tahini lover, since it is shamelessly served over salad alone. (The salad base acts as an excuse for eating copious amounts of tahini, without actually spooning it into your gullet directly out of the container like some sort of tahini-crazed cave person.) I made this salad one night for my roommate and myself and as we both are quite the Israeli falafel fans, we just went gaga over this tahini dressing, lifted from p.98 of the “refresh” cookbook by Ruth Tal (of Fresh restaurants). You can find the recipe online since so many people have enthusiastically reproduced it. Perhaps somewhat needlessly, I’m going to follow suit below. It will save you the time of googling it anyway if you are silly enough not to own this wonderful cookbook.

The salad was my own creation, inspired only by the food in my fridge available to me. What I found to be essential in the salad, however, was the cold previously-roasted beets (I bet pickled turnip would work well too), the tomatoes, and the marinated tofu cubes (recipe also from “refresh” cookbook and copied below). Although we didn’t have them, I think that Kalamata olives would be a great addition.

Tahini Sauce, from refresh cookbook (p. 98)


  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley (I like the curly leaf variety here)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsps lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sesame butter (tahini)

Direction: Whiz ingredients in a blender or food processor. Run until smooth, scraping the sides down once or twice.

That’s right. 1/2 cup of gloriously delicious tahini. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.


Ingredients (I leave the quantities up to you unless otherwise specified. It’s salad after all, people.)

  • Romaine lettuce
  • 1 block of tofu, cubed and marinated (See recipe below for marinade)
  • cold or cooled roasted beets, chopped
  • carrot, shredded
  • grape tomatoes, halved
  • cauliflower, cut in small florets
  • Kalamata olives (optional)

Direction: Make salad.

Marinade for Tofu, modified from refresh cookbook (p. 90)

N.B. This may make more marinade than you need if you’re only using one block of tofu like I did. In that case, modify the amounts to better reflect the amount of tofu you want to use. The amounts below are approximately for 3.5 c. tofu. For example, you may want to halve the recipe if you’re making less than that.

N.B. I prefer the texture and absorbency of thawed tofu from the freezer. My recommendation: use 1 block firm tofu, thawed from freezer, squeezed to drain water out, and chopped in cubes. Marinate as usual.

Ingredients (for 6 or so servings)

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup tamari
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 tbsp sunflower or sesame oil


Combine the ingredients in a bowl, then pour over the tofu. Marinate for 1 hour or more. Drain liquid and store in a sealed container in the fridge. Keeps up to 5 days.

Now eat and love life, in all sizes, shapes, species, and forms.

Tahini dressing over salad with tofu


3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 3, 2010 7:21 pm

    I love the Fresh cookbooks! Fresh is my favorite restaurant in Toronto. ~Pamela

  2. December 4, 2010 10:14 am

    I forgot to mention that the tahini sauce/dressing recipe above makes 4 servings. You can keep it in the fridge if you have extra left over, or you could just half the recipe.

  3. December 4, 2010 11:32 pm

    Wow, looks delicious! This is definitely something I’ll be trying :)

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