This dip works great alongside fresh grilled pita. (Photo: Sarah F. Berkowitz/Unpacked)

Black garlic tahini

A thick, savory tahini dip that pairs perfectly with grilled pitas or crusty artisanal bread.

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One of my favorite grocery haunts is Trader Joe’s – they’re constantly bringing in new products that are just so much fun to play around with. I was eyeing some beautiful persimmons when my eye fell on these bags of black (fermented) garlic – a product I’d been wanting to try for weeks. The fermentation process takes the kick out of raw garlic and creates a natural sweetness (without having to roast it). I briefly considered trying to make black garlic at home, but thanks to TJ’s, didn’t need to!

The first few bags I bought were polished off before I could play around with them as an ingredient – my family shmeared the black paste right onto home-baked bread and enjoyed it straight up.

But I finally made it back to the store, stocked up again, and quickly whipped up this batch of black garlic tahini. It’s wonderful. Seriously addictive. Like, I just finished all the grilled pitas and I’m looking around for something else to dip in it.

Black garlic tahini

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Prep15 mins
Yield1.5 cups

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces tahini paste
  • 2-3 heads black garlic, pulp only
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • ½ cup curly parsley
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp water, optional

Instructions

  • Slice off the top of each garlic head in a semi-circular motion (following the shape of the garlic) to access the cloves.
  • Combine all ingredients, with the garlic cloves, in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
  • Taste, and add more salt, pepper, water or lemon juice as desired.
  • You can adjust the consistency of the tahini by adding more lemon juice or water to make a pourable consistency (this recipe yields a thick spread).
  • Serve with grilled pita wedges, multi-grain crackers or as a sauce for chicken or fish.
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