Halawa (also called halvah) is my absolute favorite Middle Eastern treat. I usually make it around Easter-time. The sweet honey and sesame tahini match my celebration of the Savior’s resurrection and the coming of Spring.
Halawa is more sweet a dessert than I usually serve, which is why I don’t make it too often. A little goes a long way. You might have seen bars of Halvah candy sold in stores or Middle Eastern markets. They taste delicious but sure stick in the teeth! They are usually the crumbly, nut-butter based kind. The other way to make halawa is flour-based.
My recipe is the flour-based variety, which I adapted for whole-grain sprouted flour. You’d never know it, though. I have tried some non-flour recipes but haven’t got them right yet. This one works every time.
Halawa — Halvah (Middle Eastern Honey-Sesame Candy)
I highly recommend using roasted sesame tahini. Roasting is another means of reducing phytic acid in seeds, and it adds another dimension of flavor to this dessert.
- 1/2 cup toasted sesame oil
- 2 to 2-1/4 cups sprouted flour, spelt or soft wheat are lightest — learn to make your own here
- 1 cup roasted sesame tahini
- 3/4 cup raw honey
Warm the oil in a large heavy skillet over low heat. Add the flour and stir until the oil and flour are thoroughly combined. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the mixture begins to turn pale brown. Add the tahini and stir until the mixture has a uniform color and consistency. Turn off the heat.
In a separate small saucepan, bring the honey to a boil over high heat. Boil for 1 minute. Immediately add the hot honey to the flour mixture. Stir until the honey is completely incorporated.
Spread the mixture into an ungreased loaf pan and pack the mixture down with the back of a spatula. Let cool at room temperature for 2 hours or until the pan feels cool. It will shrink back slightly from the edges of the pan as it cools, and should therefore unmold easily when the pan is inverted. Cover tightly (in or out of the loaf pan) and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. To serve, cut into thin slices.
I hope you enjoy this recipe! Happy Resurrection Day — He Lives!
Do you have any special treats you serve in the Spring or at Easter? I’d love to hear your traditions.
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