A is very happy that The Bachelorette is over, because I can stop watching trash and telling him all about it. It all started as a "I can't sleep, let me watch trashy reality tv (although, considering what trashy reality tv shows air at work...The Bachelorette looks pretty tame TBH). " After watching 10 weeks worth of episodes, I can sum it up with one word - LETDOWN. Seriously. Although some of you might disagree with me on this. Let's discuss further. :P
Compare that to Terrace House (the more polite Japanese version of Real World on Netflix), which I started after hearing other people obsess about it. It was another show A couldn't understand why I watched...but then he got hooked. WHY? Various reasons, one of which is that it got better over time as we understood more the basis for the show, the commentators, etc. You want to know what this has to do with tahini...not much. I just wanted to plug Terrace House but also state that tahini is an underrated but versatile condiment you should consider keeping in your own..terrace house. Harharhar. I don't have a terrace though..we'll have to fix that.
I originally picked this up in an honest attempt to make homemade hummus. One day. So the jar sat unopened in my cupboard for a while.
Tahini is ground sesame paste. This paste is pretty drippy in consistency. It's not too bitter. I've had limited varieties of tahini, so I can't comment on where this stands in comparison to other kinds. What I have done is explored a few easy ways to incorporate it into everyday homecooking. I normally associate tahini with more Mediterranean-esque cuisine, but basically you can use it in any context where a sesame flavor would make something more delicious.
1) Hotpot - I'm not a huge fan of hotpot, but that one time we had people over for hotpot, I put this out as an alternative for sesame paste to add to your customized dipping sauce. Which most people promptly ignored (maybe because they weren't interested or didn't know what it was). But seeing as people put sesame into their hotpot sauce, I figured tahini would do the trick too.
2) Toast - Here you can use tahini as a nut-butter alternative. I even tried a savory version where I drizzled it with coconut aminos. Tahini pairs well with soy sauce, ok?
4) Salad dressing - Another thing you can easily google and take your pick.
5) Potato salad - I made this yesterday from an idea in Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Fast. Substitute tahini for dijon mustard. Lime juice, some soy sauce, olive oil, salt and pepper, and a sprinkling of leftover herbs. Delicious.
Tahini suits my taste because it can be used in Mediterranean-leaning and Asian-leaning cuisines. I guess you could say...it can make food taste ethnically ambiguous? Can't speak to the authenticity...but y'know TJ's walks this weird line between getting the authentic stuff and diluting the ethnicity of an ethnic food down to a more palatable format for the masses.
The nice thing is that this tahini hasn't been marketed in your face in any particular way. So the choice is up to you of how to use it. I like it. And at $3.49 for a 10.6oz jar of the organic stuff, it ain't bad at all.
TL;DR: Trader Joe's Organic Tahini. Make hummus or don't make hummus. The choice is yours. 7 out of 10.