I wanted to have a more Asian-profiled cookie in my arsenal that wasn’t just a sweet cookie, so I decided to make one with black sesame seeds, which is one of my favourite Asian dessert flavours — the decision between peanut vs black sesame tang yuans (stuffed glutinous rice balls), or matcha vs black sesame ice cream is always an easy one!
As you can tell from the pictures with the different colours and shapes of the cookies, I’ve tried making these a few times before settling on a mixing method, rolling/shaping technique and sugar level that I was happy with. The recipe below yields about 90-100 cookies (5 cm in diameter) and are darkish-grey like the image on the left below. I don’t like my cookies too sweet, and I’d say these are 6/10 in terms of sweetness. Feel free to add more sugar if you like yours a touch sweeter!
In Singapore, you can purchase the black sesame seeds at the supermarket or the wet market. I pay about $1.50 for a 250g bag at my local wet market!
The recipe is adapted from Just One Cookbook!
60g toasted black sesame seeds
160g all-purpose flour
40g almond flour
1 pinch salt
120g butter, cubed, chilled
1 egg yolk
- In a spice grinder or pestle and mortar, grind the toasted black sesame seeds. Set aside
- In a food processor, add the all-purpose flour, almond flour, sugar, salt, and ground up sesame seeds, and pulse to combine
- Add in the chilled butter and mix it on low-medium speed until well incorporated
- Tip out the mixture into a medium-sized bowl, add in the yolk, and incorporate it into the mixture with a spatula or your hands, until it comes together to form a dough
- Shape the dough into a disc about 2 cm thick and refrigerate for 10-15mins, or until you're ready to bake them (if you're not baking on the day of, keep it in the freezer. I've kept mine for up to 2 weeks and it was still good)
- When ready to bake, set the oven to 175˚C and remove the dough from the freezer. Give it 5 mins to soften up before cutting it up. If you cut it while it's still hard, it may break into pieces
- Roll the disc till it's about 1 cm thick, cut desired shapes out of it, and lay the cookies on a lined baking sheet
- Bake them in the oven for about 9-10 min, or until they turn slightly brown at the edges. If you decide to roll your dough thicker/thinner, make sure to adjust the baking time accordingly
- Remove from the oven and cool on the trays for 10min before transferring them to a cooling rack
To toast the black sesame seeds, heat them on a pan over the stove for 3-4 mins at medium-high heat. Shake them up every now and then so they don’t burn.
Instead of cutting shapes out, you can also shape your dough into a rectangle slab before chilling it, and once ready to bake, cut them into rectangles.