I heart sesame seeds, and a stunning vegan & grain free sesame orange blossom cake.

Sesame seeds are fabulous! Chocked with calcium and magnesium, they are also plentiful in manganese, iron, zinc, selenium and tryptophan. They strengthen the liver and kidneys, and act as a general tonic to the entire body. Not bad considering their size! 
Sesame seeds can be white or black, and you can buy them hulled or unhulled. Unhulled is the way to go as the husk contains a lot of the minerals and co factors necessary for their absorption. Grind them up before eating to get access to their treasures. To further help with the digestibility and nutritional value, soak them for a few hours (or overnight) and lightly pan roast them before grinding. 
If you want to take it to the next level – why not sprout them! After soaking, rinse, drain and spread out your little gems on a piece of muslin/fine sieve/other sprouting surface. They should not take long to sprout. Rinse and drain every few hours. As soon as you see a little tail poking out, you are ready to rock! They will keep in the fridge for a couple of days like this. Use them liberally in everything! On salads, vegetables, stir frys, sandwiches, baking, on eggs, anything!
So now for cake. I came across this recipe from here, but wanted to make a gluten free version, and thought why not go the whole hog and do a grain free version. I was pretty happy with the results! So were numerous others!! 🙂 
The syrup drizzle has made this look a little burnt in the photo, it wasn’t – I promise! 🙂
Sesame Orange Blossom Cake
40g coconut flour
160g almond meal
1 tbs baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt
3/4 cup unhulled tahini
300ml freshly squeezed orange juice
just under 1/4 cup honey/maple syrup
1 tsp (or more to taste) orange blossom water
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup raw, unsalted pistachios
Orange Blossom Syrup
1/4 cup honey/maple syrup
1 tbs water
1/2 tsp orange blossom water
Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
Start by toasting the sesame seeds in a dry pan over medium-high heat until just fragrant. Repeat with the pistachios, and set aside.
Line or lightly oil a 22cm spring form pan, or two smaller ones.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and squash any lumps with a fork (or sift them).
Zest one of your oranges, and juice it and the others until you have 300ml.
Pop the tahini and orange zest in a large bowl and whisk in the orange juice until nicely combined. Add the orange blossom water and honey/maple syrup and whisk until lovely and smooth.
Gradually add the dry ingredients and fold through. Add the apple cider vinegar and stir quickly to incorporate – this is what puts the air in your cake due to its reaction with the baking soda. Pour half the cake mix into your prepared tin, and the sprinkle on the sesame seeds with reckless abandon! Pour over the rest of the mixture and put into the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until your cake is golden on top and a skewer comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before taking out of the tin.
Sprinkle over your roughly chopped toasted pistachio nuts.
To make the syrup, put all ingredients into a small saucepan and gently warm until combined – do not boil. Pour over the syrup and serve!
The top of the cake will most likely be quite ‘rustic’ and uneven. If you would rather a smooth top, turn the cake upside down before you add the pistachios.
You can also make this cake with all coconut flour and no almond meal – use 70g coconut flour, and add an extra 50-60ml of orange juice.
I hope you enjoy this as much as I did! x

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