Tehina Chocolate Spread Recipe. Variations
Posted on 25th of February, 2014 by Lévana
Sesame paste, or Tehina, often plays second fiddle to other, more muscular ingredients, hummus being the most ubiquitous, followed by sauces and dips. Actually it is the main ingredient in Chalva, but most commercial Chalva (I won’t lump in this category the delicious moist artisanal varieties we find in Israeli shuks) errs hopelessly on the sweet side (not so my Quick Chalva, loosely inspired from its cloying counterpart, and nutritionally correct), so it hardly counts except as a guilty splurge.
In this spread Tehina co-stars on equal terms with the mighty chocolate, and stands up to it fearlessly, elevating the humble paste beyond its wildest dreams in terms of flavor and texture. Nutella was the comfort food dessert of my expat student years ages ago, so of course I think of it very fondly, but I never buy it as it is loaded with sugar. So I make my own spread, and please forgive this bit of swagger: It blows Nutella and other chocolate nut spreads out of the water. Super Delicious, Super Nutritious and Super Natural, it gets whipped up in a couple minutes. One more thing: It is super versatile, and you can take it places, as you will see below.
The amount of sweetener I use is very reasonable (barely 1/2 cup for six cups of spread), way below the amount used in commercial spreads, naturally and deliciously augmenting the ratio of Tehina and chocolate per serving. Attention sugar-restricted friends: You’ll love to hear that you can make it without sugar or other sweetener altogether, using Stevia or Truvia instead of the agave used here. Please do not use honey as it adds a very good but unwelcome layer of flavor in the spread; stick with the perfectly neutral agave syrup. Likewise, do not substitute anything for the coconut milk, and use the full-fat kind, it is responsible for the amazing creaminess of the spread.
This is a nice large recipe, enough for three pints. You can easily divide it, but why should you, as long as you are making it? It freezes very well, and besides you may not get a chance to: It’s that good! Here’s a way to satisfy your craving, the superfoods, gluten-free, dairy-free, low-carb way. What more could you ask for? You’re welcome!
8 ounces unsweetened chocolate, roughly chopped
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup agave syrup, dark or light
1 cup tehina paste
2 cups water (or light almond or other dairy-free milk)
Melt the with the coconut milk and the syrup on a very low flame, or microwave for two minutes. Stir the mixture until smooth.
Place the tehina in a food processor. With the motor running, add the water slowly in the feeder tube, scraping the sides once or twice, until the mixture is smooth. Add the chocolate mixture and process again until smooth. Pour into clean glass jars. Store in the refrigerator, or freeze. Makes about three pints.
- Sugar-restricted: Omit the agave, and use 1/4 to 1/3 cup stevia or truvia (none of the dreadful Splenda or other chemical sweeteners)
- Add 2-3 tablespoons rum or brandy to the mixture, and use it as top layer to ice cream cake (the rum will prevent it from freezing solid). Likewise, use it as topping or filling to any cake, like a ganache. Spread while it is is still liquid, before it firms up, so it will spread easily.
- Add some chopped toasted nuts, or toasted sesame seeds, or grated unsweetened coconut, and use as a filling for a tart. Or shape the mixture into little balls, and roll in cocoa powder or coconut. You could also pat the whole mixture into a pan, chill, then cut into squares or bars.
- Use peanut or other nut butter instead of tehina, in equal part. In this case reduce the water by about half.
- Substitute 2 cups roasted chestnuts for the tehina, and proceed with the recipe, In this case omit the liquid that gets mixed with the tehina.
- Slather on apple, pear or banana slices, or on berries.