Sesame is a valuable addition to the winter pantry. This seed is a powerhouse of nutrients and is extensively used in Ayurveda to nourish and fortify the body’s tissues against the cooling and drying effect of Vata (the Dosha governing winter). Sesame is used internally and topically to rejuvenate skin, hair, teeth, and bone; it is also used in tonics for nourishing a woman’s reproductive system and cycle.
One of my favorite ways to get this food into my diet is this sweet snack – a few of these is like an energy bar! These snack bites are easy to make and quite lovely with an afternoon cup of warming Chai.
If one tends to be Pitta (warm~hot) in nature, it is best to reduce or avoid this seed especially in the summer.
1 cup fresh, grated coconut loosely packed
Coconut palm sugar to taste – I used about 2/3 cup
Heat a skillet on medium flame and toast the sesame seeds for a few minutes till they crackle and pop. Do not leave them untended since they burn easily; when toasted remove into a plate and let cool.
To the same skillet, add coconut and toast until it is light brown and fragrant; if using dry coconut flakes, this step can be avoided. Allow coconut to cool on a plate as well. (If you add the hot ingredients to a bowl, water may condense in the bowl as they cool. This would tend to make the food moldy if kept unrefrigerated! So it is best to keep everything dry.)
Pulse sesame seeds, coconut, and palm sugar in a dry high-speed blender jar until the oil is released and the mixture starts to ball up. One can add crushed cardamom seeds , a few strands of saffron and/or a few drops of vanilla for added flavor.
Since this recipe has fresh coconut, it is best to store this in the fridge – it should keep up to 2 weeks.