Sesame seeds in a wooden spoon isolated on white background
Food - Drink
What Are Sesame Seeds Anyway?
Sesame seeds are tiny kernels harvested from the fruit of the tall, grass-like sesamum indicum plant. These kernels are the only edible part of the plant.
Sesame plants are bright green and can grow up to nine feet tall, depending on the variety. They easily grow in dry and hot conditions, with good resistance to droughts.
The sesame bush produces fruit pods that resemble okra, filled with edible seeds. Once the seeds are dried, they must be kept away from too much moisture to avoid spoiling.
Sesame seeds are usually only about 0.1 inches long, very thin, and come in red, brown, and black varieties, in addition to the white sesame seeds commonly seen on hamburger buns.
Sesame seeds can be eaten plain, sprinkled atop noodle dishes, rice bowls, and salads, used in sauces, or made into oil. Toasting them first really brings out their nutty flavor.
If you store sesame seeds in an airtight vessel and keep them away from direct light, they should last for up to three months in a cool, dry place or half a year in the fridge.