Tahini Blondies with a Chocolate Twist

Serves 16 squares 30 April 2020 Dairy Free Vegetarian Friendly
Barely a week goes by when these internet-breaking golden chewy squares do not emerge from my oven.  The original recipe from my inspiring friend Adeena Sussman's book, Sababa, are mouthwateringly delicious, a cinch to make and a perfect slice-and-share solution.  I have adapted the recipe ever so slightly and stirred through chopped chunks of Pump Street Chocolate.

It was such a thrill to be joined by the inimitable Adeena Sussman creator of the original blondie recipe from Tel Aviv, Joanna Brennan the genius behind Pump Street Chocolate and Bakery from her London kitchen and Rachel Simons of Seed and Mill in NYC the purveyor of the finest tahini and halva I have ever tasted.. It was utterly fantastic for us all to have you baking along and discussing all things chocolate, tahini and of course recipes.

I have adapted Adeena’s original recipe, replacing black sesame seeds with white, omitting the pepper and adding a good smattering of chopped chocolate. I have been known to add cinnamon to the mix and if you are cardamom averse, feel free to leave out (but please don’t because its an incredible flavour addition). As always, there are endless options for you to play with.

This recipe makes 16 squares. I make this in a 20cm (8 inch) square pan. These are made with melted butter, but are even more unctuous with brown butter. For a dairy free version these work brilliantly with olive oil (the equivalent is 125ml or 1/2 cup). I have also been known to use spelt flour which gives an added nuttiness and useful if you have some hanging around in the pantry while we are struggling to find flour.

For a dairy free version of these, I replace the butter with olive oil and it works brilliantly.

Tahini Blondies with a Chocolate Twist

  • 3 tbsp sesame seeds, lightly toasted and cooled
  • 115g (1/2 cup or 1 stick) butter, melted and cooled (I use salted butter for everything) 
  • 150g (1 1/4 cups) plain flour (all purpose)
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom, I crush the seeds from 4 cardamom pods
  • 1/2 tsp malden salt
  • 250g (1 1/4 cups) light soft brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 130g (1/2 cup) pure tahini paste
  • 100g chopped dark chocolate, 70% minimum (or chocolate chips)
  • Preheat your oven to 180C (350F)
  • Butter your baking pan and line with two criss crossing strips of baking parchment, buttering between each layer leaving an overhang on all sides.  
  • Place the sesame seeds in a small frying pan on a medium heat and toast until they are fragrant and slightly browned. This will take about 3 minutes, but will happen very quickly at the end so do not take your eyes off them or they will burn.  Once they are done, transfer them into a bowl to stop cooking and cool.
  • Place the butter in a small saucepan and melt.  Allow to cool slightly while you gather the remaining ingredients together. 
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cardamom, salt and sesame seeds.  
  • In another medium bowl, whisk together the browns sugar, eggs, melted butter and vanilla extract until smooth.  
  • Fold the dry ingredients into the wet with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until just incorporated, and then fold in the tahini until smooth.  
  • Stir through the chopped chocolate and pour the batter into the prepared pan.  
  • Bake until the blondies are golden on the outside and the centre doesn’t jiggle but is still soft, 22-25 minutes.  
  • Remove from the oven and cool completely in the pan before slicing, sharing and devouring. 
  • Unlike brownies, these actually taste better as they sit around……..
Have you made this dish?

Let me know what you think, share your efforts and any tweaks you made to the recipe on Instagram, don’t forget to tag #BuildingFeasts or email me on info@buildingfeasts.com