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Old 08-12-2008, 11:04 AM   #1
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Question Should Tahini taste bitter?

I got some Tahini for Hummas. Should it have a bitter taste to it?

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Old 08-12-2008, 11:55 AM   #2
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either one alone can have a bitter aftertaste
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Old 08-12-2008, 01:30 PM   #3
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Add salt to taste. Salt counters bitter flavors.
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Old 08-12-2008, 03:46 PM   #4
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By itself, tahini can have a bit of a bitter taste. But, by the time you mix it with the chickpeas, garlic, lemon juice, and evoo you will not notice it.
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Old 08-13-2008, 06:24 AM   #5
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Thanks for the replies. I've only used tahini once before and didn't remember any bitterness.
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Old 08-13-2008, 09:26 AM   #6
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Yes indeed, it's bitter by itself. Made into Humas the other ingredients bring all to a tasty blend.
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Old 08-13-2008, 11:30 AM   #7
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I am astonished by declarations here that Tahini is bitter. I'm accustomed to its taste from childhood — bitter means your product is spoiled. You wont die from eating it, but would use oxidized salad oil?

The problem with Tahini is it doesn't move off the shelf very fast, you need to frequent a middle eastern grocer who runs a very busy shop.
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Old 08-13-2008, 07:06 PM   #8
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The tahini I've used has no bitter taste. It tastes like sesame seed peanut butter.
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Old 08-13-2008, 07:18 PM   #9
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There is also a difference between raw and roasted tahini. Roasted will taste more like a nut-butter while the raw is more, well, raw. I wouldn't call it bitter but, maybe like contrasting raw and cooked garlic. Both will work fine in hummus.
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Old 08-13-2008, 09:24 PM   #10
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And, are we talking about a person's taste perception (my step-daughter doesn't like hamburger buns with sesame seeds on them because she thinks they taste bitter - I don't taste that) - or are we talking about tahini that has oxydized and gone "rancid" - which all oils will do, peanut butter, tahani, vegetable oil, Crisco ... etc. ???

Can the OP differentiate between "bitter" and "rancid"? Can you describe how to tell the difference? In my experience - rancid is more of a rotten and "sour" taste - and it also has an off "odor" - bitter is odorless and somewhat subjective.

I don't know if the OP was tasting what might be the bitterness that some people taste - or maybe it was just starting to go rancid ...

Oh - and getting tahani from a middle eastern store is no guarantee ...
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Old 08-14-2008, 11:03 AM   #11
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I think you've made an insightful observation that rancid and bitter don't equate. I'm no food expert, but I have no problem distinguishing between rancid and bitter. I may or may not like bitter, but I absolutely dislike rancid. The bottom line is, if the taste isn't pleasing, don't use it.

Fresh tahini tastes like fresh peanut butter, indeed, I know a person who makes hummus with unprocessed peanut butter. My kids haven't a clue how to explain it, but they'd know rancid oil in a second, and so will you in short order. When I buy tahini, I taste it before I go home. If there's a question in my mind about it, I return it there and then.
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Old 08-15-2008, 07:45 AM   #12
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Based on my smell only and a friend's confirmation about the taste and smell I believe it is bad. I've thrown it out and processed some almonds into butter as a sub.
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Old 08-15-2008, 10:37 AM   #13
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Bravo!!!
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Old 08-18-2008, 03:38 PM   #14
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I see you got your answer. I do agree, tahini is crazy bitter. I can say I'm not a fan of the taste on its own. Mixed into chickpeas it works, but needs salt for sure.
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Old 08-19-2008, 09:14 AM   #15
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I see you got your answer. I do agree, tahini is crazy bitter. I can say I'm not a fan of the taste on its own. Mixed into chickpeas it works, but needs salt for sure.
For crying out loud will you stop with the silly notion that tahini is bitter. Unspoiled tahina has a clean, fresh, aromatic scent and doesn't begin to taste bitter. You're eating a badly decomposed product if you describe it as bitter.

I had a friend who moaned and groaned about the olive oil he began using at his doctor's suggestion — he said he hated the stuffl. When I tasted it, I thought it was linseed oil furniture polish — it was that badly oxidized. These are not prone to spoil products, they have to be really abused or stored improperly before they arrive on our shores. Europeans consider us too unsophisticated to worry about our approval. Should you buy olive oil or tahini in Europe, you'd be stunned by how these products are regulated and dated.
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Old 08-19-2008, 12:23 PM   #16
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For crying out loud will you stop with the silly notion that tahini is bitter. Unspoiled tahina has a clean, fresh, aromatic scent and doesn't begin to taste bitter. You're eating a badly decomposed product if you describe it as bitter.
This outburst was uncalled for. Unless three cans from two different stores were ALL rancid, and I doubt that's statistically possible, YES, Tahini is bitter. Bitterness factor can be determined by the individual. Just because you don't think it's bitter, doesn't mean I don't. Some people can suck lemons, others cannot. Some people can bite into a habanero pepper and not blink while others will have to down a gallon of milk and hope to survive the experience.

In conclusion, I stand by my belief that YES, TAHINI IS BITTER.
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Old 08-19-2008, 12:33 PM   #17
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[quote In conclusion, I stand by my belief that YES, TAHINI IS BITTER.[/quote]

Okay, I withdraw my testy remark — but all the same I can't help wondering if an ice cream soda burns your tongue.
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Old 08-19-2008, 01:32 PM   #18
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I can't help wondering if an ice cream soda burns your tongue.
What does that have to do with anything?

For the record, I find tahini bitter as well. I have had it many times from many different stores and restaurants and street vendors. I find it bitter, but not in an unpleasant way. Everyone can experience tastes differently. Cilantro is one of my favorite herbs, but some people think it tastes like soap. Each person is different mignon.
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Old 08-19-2008, 02:38 PM   #19
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Okay, I withdraw my testy remark — but all the same I can't help wondering if an ice cream soda burns your tongue.
One could argue that that would depend on the flavor. Burn by definition can be the effect caused by certain flavors or could be based on heat. Same word, different definitions and sensations. I find ice cream extremely painful but others love it and it soothes them. Everyone's different, as GB said. It's one thing to say, "I don't find it bitter" it's another to say "definitive, it is not."
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Old 08-20-2008, 07:15 AM   #20
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I don't mean to stir the pot but I bought some more at a different store and it is not bitter. Almost along the lines of peanut butter but it tastes of sesame seeds.
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