Sesame is a crop that produce the well-known
sesame seeds. It is a productiv crop that is
very drought-resistent, and will grow on
poor and even salty grounds.
The seeds have the form of tears, and can be white,
but green and black are also possible.
The taste of the sesame seeds is nutty and sweet.
Sesame seeds are used in the Western kitchen in
the production of bagels , rolls and breads.
It other uses are in icecream, nutty bars
The seeds burst from there pods with a sharp
pop. The capsules are harvested by hand.
Sesam ihas been in culture for more
than 4000 years.
First trace of its use are sesamseeds
found in Babylon and Assyria. Sesame oil
was used in oil lamps in the old Egypt.
The oil was also found in the grave of
Sesame first came into culture in Africa,
and spread to indiaan d China, it is now
cultivated around the medeaterian sea.
Sesame as a crop
The plant will become 1 meter high,
and flowers with white, belly shaped flowers.
The leaves are lanceolate and are not eaten
by insects. The reason for this is not known.
sesame seed contains large amounts of fat and proteine.
Sesame oil is cold pressed from sesame seeds,
those seeds contain 48% oil. What remains is
a proteine rich food for cattle.
The oil is very stable due to its high content
of anti-oxidants. The price is about twice as
high as soya-oil.
Different oils are used for massage,
the best are:
grape seed oil,
sesame oil and
For people with a oily skin use
sunfloweroil and soya oil.
sesame oil or til oil in hinduism
In Hinduism "til" oil is used in
deepa or oil lamps kept in front of
shrines for the Deities.
The start is the most critical phase:
The seeds need to be sown in moist and warm
ground. After the germination conditions must
be kept that way. Sesame tolerates
slightly silt ground.
If the sesame starts to grow it will
grow faster then the weeds in the fields.
There is no need for herbicides. The use
of fertilizer is only nescerrary for
the nitrogen part. The whole growing period
takes 4 months . After harvesting sesame needs
to be drought until its contain less then 6%
Almost all the sesame that is produced worldwide
is harvested manually because of shattering as
the plant dry down.
New patented crops have non dishiscent sesame
capsules: although they burst open they will
not spread the seeds. This will make
mechanical harvesting possible as is already
done in the USA. But for Rajasthan, India
it wont make a big differennce as human
labour is very cheap.
storing sesame seeds
Sesame seeds need to be stored dry. The seeds
will detoriate fastly when kept in moist places.
In India the seedpods can stay on the field
for two months, the seeds can be released
by the use of very little force.
Sesame world production 2009.
sesame world production
There is about worldwide about 8 milion
acres of sesame fields. Most of them
can be found in India, in Rajasthan. Second is
China. Together they produce 75% of the
world production of sesame. Most of this
is for local use. USR, Mexico and Kenia,
Etheopia are other producers.
Sesame has purple, pink or white flowers and can become
one meter high.
Sesame has been just harvested and are placed in
upright position for a week to dry.
The seeds are only shaken out onto a cloth
after all the capsules have opened. The photo
was made in the semi desert of Rajasthan, India.
Sesame seeds come in different colors, white is most
populair, but black and light green are also possible.
It takes 3000 seeds to produce one kilogram.
the future of sesame
The price of sesame nowadays is to high to let it
play an important role as an oil crop.
But this price is mainly based on the
inefficient manual harvesting.
There is much room for developing new cultivars
that produce more seed. But most important:
sesame can grow on grounds that are too
silty and dry for other crops.
Tahini or sesame paste is made of slightly
roasted hulled sesame seeds, it is the
equivalent of peanut butter but tastes
To make a paste use 0,5 kg of hulled
sesame seeds, roast them slightly for
10 minutes. Add 1 dl of olive oil or
other vegetable oil until the paste
has the right constitancy. Add (sea)salt.
Hummus is a populair spread in the Middle-east and
India. The dip or spread is made from cooked,
mashed chickpeas, blended with roasted hulled
sesame seeds, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic.
humus recipe, the fast way
Use canned chickpeas and drain the chickpeas
and rinse them well with hot water.
Put chicken beans in a blender and add add tahine,
lemon juice, garlic and olive oil and blend
it until a smooth pasta.
In Libanon it is served with frehley picked