WHAT IS IT?
Chinese sesame paste is a thin nutty flavoured paste made from toasted sesame seeds used in various sauces and desserts in Asian cuisines. Not to be confused with Tahini, which has a completely different flavour.
HOW IS IT USED?
Chinese sesame paste is almost always used directly from the jar. It is most commonly added in sauces for noodles (aka sesame noodles) and used as additional flavour for sauces for hot pot as well.
It can also be used to dip pan fried rice noodle rolls or mixed in with some condensed milk and drizzled on dessert. The usage is endless, as long as you are willing to experiment. 🙂
Recipes with Chinese Sesame Paste usages:
- Grilled Shrimp Vermicelli Noodle Bowl
- Crispy Cheung Fun (Rice Noodle Rolls) + Spicy Hoisin & Maple Sesame Sauce
WHERE DO I FIND IT?
You can typically find these at Asian supermarkets in small jars in the sauces aisle.
If it is difficult to find, it can also be purchased online.
Substitution for Sesame Paste
You can also substitute this with unsweetened natural peanut butter and sesame oil. Mix 1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter with 1-2 drops of sesame oil. Why natural peanut butter? It doesn't have a thickener/binder so the oils and solids separate just like the sesame paste which gives it a thinner consistency.
If you only have the thick type of peanut butter, you can thin it out by mixing oil into it (use an oil that does not have a strong taste - basically anything but olive oil) and mixing until it gets a thin consistency and then add the sesame oil for some added nuttiness. Just make sure it's unsweetened. 🙂
Nutty! 🙂 It taste like peanut butter essentially without the sugar.
It is slightly thinner than natural peanut butter and is very rich.
The oil and solids separate easily and needs to be stirred before prior using. I find that when you stir it up very well and then store it in the fridge it stays combined for longer.
Troubleshooting dry paste : Sometimes you might find that when you get to the bottom of the jar there's no more oil and it almost feels too dry to be used. Don't waste it! You can save it 🙂 Just add a few teaspoon of oil (use anything but the strong flavoured oils like olive oil) and mix!
Once opened, it should be stored in the fridge.
Disclaimer: As with most of my posts, I provide affiliate links to make items easier to find if you cannot purchase this locally. I would never recommend anything I don’t own myself or highly recommend, but I would prefer you buy your items locally to support your stores (and chances are they are cheaper locally!) ?