The best Mediterranean Sesame Tahini Custard Pie recipe is made with a sweet creamy sesame tahini custard and a cookie-like sesame seed pie crust!
What Is A Sesame Seed Tahini Custard Pie?
Dare I say this recipe appeared to me in a dream, through a poof of sesame seeds that escaped from my Genie lamp?
Besides the creamy tahini custard filling, it is baked in a buttery, cookie-like pie crust, a bit of sesame flour, and lots of toasted sesame seeds.
A decadent treat Aladdin himself would approve of.
Tahini For Dessert
Some say it has the texture of peanut butter, but tahini is so much more exotic in flavor.
It’s flavor is light and delicate, and ever so slightly nutty and naturally sweet, yet intensified when toasted.
The Best Sesame Tahini Pie Was First Introduced On Television
Since this pie is a new thing, I know, because I created it and introduced it on television, I know you’ve never had it!
The judges on The Great American Recipe, with PBS, where I introduced it in Season 1 Episode 3, loved it, which won me that round!
So… what are you waiting for!
Let’s Talk About The Sesame Tahini Custard
A fusion of the Middle East, where tahini is used in a variety of recipes, and France, because I wanted this milk pie custard to resemble a creme brûlée.
With the inspiration of these two aspects of the world’s finest cooking, each element of this pie became clear in my mind’s eye:
- egg yolks and sesame paste
- pure sugar and not brown sugar, which would alter the color
- sweet cream and not cream cheese, which can be acidic
- a real sesame crust and not graham cracker crusts
- can be a large pie or individual pies
Individual Tahini Custard Party Pies
If you are a pie lover, like me, you will often opt to make a pie for a gathering of family and friends, over just about any other dessert.
However, I’ve found that there is an easier way to present a delicious pie than serving it in one big ole dish!
Once the pie is cut, messy things start to happen; the inside can ooze out, the presentation begins to look sloppy and any pie remaining risks air expose.
For many of my pies, I now like to make them individually, using the Mason Jar Lid pie hack I’ve shared with you.
In this way, a large platter with lots of individual pies looks more festive, easier to serve, and easier to store remaining pies.
And, of course, for this Tahini Custard Pie, made into individual servings, a Genie lamp cookie cut out, can be placed on top of each serving.
After all, no one wants to miss out on a little magic!
The Inspiration For Tahini Custard Pie
Having grown up with a Syrian mom, who cooked both Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine in our home, introduced my sisters and me to fabulous flavors and unusual ingredients.
Growing up in the countryside of Maryland, there were no international markets or a section in the grocery stores for unusual ingredients.
My inspiration was from my favorite candy growing up, halvah, a fudge like candy made out of sesame paste!
So, you see, tahini is not just for hummus!
How To Make The Best Mediterranean Sesame Pie Crust
For the very best crust, try to get ahold of sesame flour to add to the all purpose flour.
If obtaining sesame flour is not possible, it can be made by grinding the sesame seeds on the finest setting in a coffee grinder.
Like most pie crusts, the flour, butter and sugar are whisked together into a dough, that is rolled into a pie plate.
How To Make The Sesame Tahini Custard
The custard is equally simple, in that the ingredients are whisked together, poured into the pie crust and baked to perfection .
For an added whimsical touch, I pressed a Genie lamp from a cookie cutter, with reserved pie crust, baked separately and added to the top of the pie, once baked.
Adding cookie cutouts to the top of the pie can also be done by placing the uncooked crust cutouts to the top of the pie, halfway through the baking time.
Remember, I had to make this winning pie on television in under 90-minutes!
- Sesame flour
- Milk and Half and half
- Sesame seeds
- Measuring cup
- Measuring spoons
- Rolling pin
- Baking dish or pie plate
- Food processor
- Genie cookie cutter (optional)
Other Custard Pies To Love
Hopefully by now, I have intrigued you for unusual custard pie flavors that are easy to make.
It’s just something I love creating and never seem to run out of ideas for the next Best custard pie idea!
- Almond Crusted Chocolate Custard Pie – with its almond and cacao cookie-like crust and silky chocolate custard filling, is a chocolate lovers pie.
- Peach Pecan Rum Spiked Custard Pie – loaded with fresh peaches, a pecan butter crust and a spiced rum pecan crisp topping.
- Grandmas Bourbon Pecan Pie – loaded with pecans, both in the pie crust and filling; which is a boozy custard with good ole southern Bourbon.
- Quick Custard Raspberry Mini Tarts – perfectly formed in mini-tart pans, sweetened condensed milk and eggs, and baked to summertime perfection.
Mediterranean Sesame Tahini Custard Pie
- Pie Dish
- Rolling Pin
- Cookie cutter optional
- Tahini Pie Crust
- 8 tbsp Unsalted butter cold
- 1 1/2 cups All purpose flour
- 1/4 cup Sesame flour *see notes
- 1/4 cup Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1 Egg white save the yolk for the custard
- 1/4 cup Milk, cold reserve 1 tbsp
- 1 tbsp Sesame seeds
- Tahini Custard Filling
- 2 Whole Eggs plus 2 egg yolks
- 3/4 cup Sugar
- 1/4 cup Tahini
- 1 cup Half and half
- 1/3 cup Farina also known as cream of wheat
- 1/2 tsp Cardamom
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- Tahini Pie Crust
- In a food processor, place the dry ingredients (except seeds), with butter and pulse until it crumbles together.
- Mix the milk and egg-white together, reserving 1 tablespoon milk. While the machine is running, pour in the wet mixture. It should come together quickly into a ball.
- On a floured surface, with a rolling pin, roll the dough out and place in the pie dish. Crimp the edges and brush with reserved milk, followed by a sprinkle of the sesame seeds around the edges.
- *see notes for optional crust cutouts.
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Tahini Custard Filling
- Place all of the custard ingredients in a large bowl and whisk until light and frothy. Pour into the pie crust, and place in the preheated oven to bake for 10-minutes.
- Lower the temperature of the oven to 325, and bake until the custard is firm and the crust is golden brown, about another 45-minutes. Cool to room temperature and serve.
- Step-by-step pics are in my video.
- Specialty stores and health food stores have sesame flour, however the sesame flour can be made using a coffee grinder set on finest grind setting.
- For an added measure of wow factor in this open-faced custard pie, cutouts can be made with crust scraps and halfway through the baking time, set them on top of the pie and continue baking. I used a Genie lamp cookie cutter for the whimsy of it.