Monday, October 24, 2011

What F*ck is a Sesame?

Today I was craving sesame seeds. I was then told by a friend that my craving confirmed I am definitely a vegan. Who craves Sesame seeds?? Apparently I do. My craving reminded my of the Mitch Hedburg Skit on Sesame. Enough that I went and watched it on You Tube, hence the title of this post. Here is a bit of the skit I was thinking of. You are warned. Mitch was not vegan, but still, funny.

I didn't do what you all think. I didn't go out and eat a bowl of sesame seeds. Instead, I made Maui ginger marinated tempeh with sesame seeds, wild and brown rice with herbs and sesames seeds and collard greens fried in sesame oil and topped with... yes.. sesame seeds. I have fulfilled the craving. If only all of my cravings were so easy.

Before I get to my dinner, back to the question that Mitch Hedburg raised... what the hell is a sesame?  Well, it is a plant and normally grows in Africa and India and the seeds are super good. They are one of the oldest condiments out there. Mainly used in Asian dishes, they add a little nuttiness and a little crunch to food. You can also make tahini with them (Oddly, I have tahini and didn't think to use any at the time!).

Are sesame seeds healthy? Of course! They are a great source of manganese and copper. They also have calcium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1 zinc and fiber. They are also known to help lower blood pressure and cholesterol.

I love when my cravings are healthy. It doesn't happen often, so i figured I should just go with it today.

I was going to make sesame crusted tofu, but I was running late and hadn't prepped anything, so I hit up Planet Organic and found some pre-marinated tempeh. It was good, but I would have rather made a marinade from scratch. I know that would be better, but sometimes, time isn't on your side.

Maui Ginger Tempeh

  • One package tempeh (I actually used half, but would work with all of it)
  • 1/4 cup of Maui Marinade (I have had this forever, but go check the grocery store for marinades. They are usually with meat and fish, but most are vegan. Read ingredients first!)
  • 2-3 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
Getting the Tempeh ready to bake. The strips cook faster than the not pre-cut stuff
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Take the tempeh and add the marinade of your choice. If you can, let it sit for an hour. If you can't, get marinaded Tempeh. I used ginger-garlic. Add marinade and tempeh to an oven safe dish and top with lots of sesame seeds.

Cook for about 30 minutes, flipping once. You can also fry this if you want. heat some oil in a pan and fry for about 8 minutes a side.
first time cooking wild rice. Just like brown rice, super easy

I wasn't finished with my sesame craving yet. I also made some wild rice with sesame seeds. Take 1 cup of wild rice or a mix of brown and wild. Add to a pot with 2 1/2 cups water or veggie broth, a tsp of salt, a tsp of butter and a bay leaf. Bring it to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 40 minutes.
I do this side all the time. It is one of my faves.

Lastly I paired this with sauteed collards with balsamic vinaigrette, dried pomegranate and, yes, toasted sesame seeds. I heated sesame oil in a pan. Added the greens and cooked for 5 minutes. Then I added the remaining ingredients and cooked for another 5 or so.
Dinner in under an hour and only minutes to prepare

The cooking time took a bit (40 minutes), but the work was about 5 minutes. Perfect after work dinner.


  1. That looks amazing. And this is your best title yet!!

  2. Funny video! Yep we should just can the patties and serve spaghetti at all those McCruelty places. Great recipe. Thanx for posting.

  3. I have discovered I always crave sesame oil and sesame seeds right before my period starts. Forget about chocolate. I just want to drink a whole bag of toasted sesame seeds lol