Dukka comes from the Arabic, and it means to pound. Since we’re not pounding, but using the food processor, this is quick and easy to make. Traditional dukka in the Middle East, is like our Mrs. Dash, and goes on everything!

Do use whole, brown sesame seeds so you get twelve times more calcium than you do from hulled, white sesame seeds. The whole, brown sesame seeds you find in our bulk bins are also a fraction of the cost of those little packages of the white ones you find in supermarkets.

How do I use dukka? I may coat fish, chicken or tofu with dukka and roast my dish in the oven, or sprinkle dukka on food like scallops or beans after I’ve stir-fried them. I love this mixture to jazz up a baked potato, or on sunny-side up eggs, or shashouka. Dukka is great on sautéed veggies, winter squash, or sprinkled on salads. The easiest way to use dukka is to simply add some to extra-virgin olive oil in a little bowl to make a wonderful dipping oil.

Makes 2 cups (keeps for a month in the refrigerator, longer if you store it in the freezer)   

¼ C whole brown sesame seeds ½ C roasted almonds
6 Tbsp coriander seeds ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
3 Tbsp whole cumin seeds 1 Tbsp dried thyme
½ C roasted, shelled pistachios 2 tsp good salt
2 tsp black pepper

In a medium skillet, toast sesame seeds with coriander and cumin over medium heat, shaking pan until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Let cool completely. When cool, add together with the remaining ingredients in a food processor (use the steel blade) and pulse until finely ground. Transfer dukka to a bowl.

I buy my pistachios and almonds already roasted so I don’t have to roast those, too, and the quality of ours at the store is excellent. If I had raw pistachios and almonds at home, I’d spread them on a cookie sheet or paella pan – I love my enamel-coated steel paella pan (you can get one, too, at our neighbor’s, the West Concord 5&10) – and roast in a 250 degree oven for about 20 minutes. It’s simple, but another step, and if I can, I like to eliminate extra steps! The paella pan, however, is great, and you can use yours to roast or bake anything. It’s a dream to clean, too!

Coriander and cumin, often used together, are said to be useful as an aid to digestion and absorption of nutrients from food.