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Halvah - a Candy Made From Sesame Seed Butter

Updated on December 22, 2019
A rolled ball of Halvah
A rolled ball of Halvah

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces whole sesame seeds
  • 1/4 cup thick honey

The Food Processor

I found an old cookbook with a Halvah recipe in it. It called for 1 cup of sesame seeds and 2 tablespoons of honey. They instructed that you had to grind the sesame seeds in a small electric seed grinder. Then, you add honey to it and roll into balls. You can coat them with additional sesame seeds or shredded coconut, but I did not do that. I'm tempted to frost them with sugar and cinnamon.

I have a food processor that is for small batches, and I didn't realize until yesterday, that I could flip the blade over for grinding spices. Yes. You press the blade sideways, and pull it from the shaft and flip it over, slide it back down the shaft and lock it back on.

Adding the Seeds to the Processor

I dumped the entire bottle of sesame seeds into the processor, but I think there were too many. I started the processor on high speed to grind them, and was surprise to see the sesame seeds turn into a liquid. Like peanut butter.

I am amazed. I dumped the sesame seeds back out and did a series of smaller batches. High for a couple seconds, then low to puree.

Thick Paste

Now that I have ground all the seeds into a thick paste, I need to add some honey to bind and sweeten.

Since the original recipe called for 1 cup of seeds,and I used 2 cups, I need to add twice the honey.

Honey

The honey I used was thick to start with, and adding it into the sesame paste was interesting, because I had to fold it into the paste.

It ended up the consistency of modeling clay. I started to make a ball, and then decided to put it in a dish for cutting later into fudge size squares.

The Taste or Flavor

Now, mind you, I was expecting to taste a good flavor when I bit into that ball. I was not expecting a bitter flavor. But it was.

Then, I looked it up online, and apparently that bitter flavor is common. Even expected as part of the Halvah experience. I think it is an acquired taste, and I'm not sure I like it. There is a coworker that I'm planning on taste testing it, and I'll have to report back if it is everything she remembers about it.

Blade Reversal

Apparently, if you have the blade a certain direction, it will chop your items. If you reverse the blade, it grinds.

Blade Reversal for Seed Grinding

switch blade over
switch blade over
see how blade is opposite direction? I pulled it off and flipped it over and reinstalled it
see how blade is opposite direction? I pulled it off and flipped it over and reinstalled it

Sesame Seeds

I purchased my sesame seeds at Fleet Farm. I purchased a second bottle, just in case my fondness caused addiction to Halvah.

Sesame seeds 10 ounce jar
Sesame seeds 10 ounce jar
pour them into food processor
pour them into food processor
food processor on high
food processor on high
food processor on high
food processor on high
see how it is starting to turn into butter
see how it is starting to turn into butter
switching to low speed
switching to low speed
too much to process, dumping into bowl to add smaller amounts
too much to process, dumping into bowl to add smaller amounts
honey
honey
two cups of sesame seeds after being ground
two cups of sesame seeds after being ground
add honey and knead
add honey and knead
now a hard ball
now a hard ball
made a ball
made a ball
changed mind and put the Halvah in a square tub and placed it in the refrigerator
changed mind and put the Halvah in a square tub and placed it in the refrigerator

Comments

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    • firstcookbooklady profile imageAUTHOR

      Char Milbrett 

      3 months ago from Minnesota

      Rita, I had to turn my blade over...maybe you do too...thanks for your comment!

    • profile image

      Rita Montague 

      3 months ago

      I used to make it this way so I tried again today. The seeds wouldn't grind up. Then I realized I was using unhulled seeds. I guess that makes a difference.

    • firstcookbooklady profile imageAUTHOR

      Char Milbrett 

      19 months ago from Minnesota

      Linda Crampton, thank you for your comment. So far, I'm not sure that I like the bitterness of my batch.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      19 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      There used to be a store near my home that sold delicious halvah, but unfortunately it has closed. Thanks for sharing the recipe and the tips. Your version of the treat sounds delicious, too!

    • firstcookbooklady profile imageAUTHOR

      Char Milbrett 

      19 months ago from Minnesota

      Louise Powles, thanks for your comment. I'm glad you like my recipes. I think today I'm going to try out my Krumkake iron.

    • Coffeequeeen profile image

      Louise Powles 

      19 months ago from Norfolk, England

      This sounds really nice. I always enjoy following the recipe's you post.

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