When Sesame Meets Salt

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May 2008

If you ask for a salt shaker in Japan, you might get a funny look. Throughout the East there has never been a tradition of sprinkling raw salt on food. Instead table condiments were used, usually salt with other ingredients. One of those is Gomasio, a universal condiment used for centuries. From goma meaning sesame and shio meaning salt, gomasio is still made in small batches in Japanese kitchens. One of the first lessons of macrobiotics is how to make gomasio, by dry roasting sesame seeds in a skillet and grinding them with sea salt in a suribachi, (Japanese mortar and pestle). It's a simple and meditative task with great reward. When hot sesame is combined and ground with salt, the seed's oil melts and coats the salt, mellowing it so you get smooth full–flavor and yet consume less salt.

Splendor and Abundance

Gomasio is a nice way to enjoy one of nature's most valuable gifts, the sesame seed. The expression ‘Open Sesame’ declares an entrance into splendor and abundance. Believed to have originated in Africa, sesame Sesamum indicum is the oldest known herbaceous plant grown for seed. Used far into prehistory, sesame was an important food of Mediterranean and Eastern civilizations. The Ancient Egyptians milled sesame seed to make flour, Greek and Turkish soldiers carried it in their rations, and the Romans ground it into paste to spread on bread. Today, sesame is recognized as one of the most concentrated sources of important nutrients including essential fatty acids, calcium, iron, and high quality protein with amino acids such as methionine, tryptophan and lysine that are often missing in other vegetable protein sources.

Open Sesame and Shake

Eden makes the finest traditional Gomasio in five flavors. EDEN Organic Gomasio is a wholesome, flavorful low sodium condiment that can be sprinkled on almost any food. Each one is small batch crafted at Eden in Clinton, Michigan. Organically grown unhulled black or tan sesame seed is dry roasted releasing its oil, and slowly ground with oven roasted EDEN Sea Salt. The oil coats the salt crystals, gently carrying the salty flavor and creating a smooth, mellow condiment. EDEN Organic Gomasio is packed in 3.5 ounce glass with an easy to use dual shaker/pour top. It is delicious on whole grains, noodles, baked potatoes, salads, vegetables, and sprinkled over EDEN Organic Popcorn. It's a tasty addition to vinaigrettes and marinades, and an ideal flourish for all grilled food. Enjoy some today for abudant flavor and nourishment!