Here's a recipe inspired by an idea from my good friend and baking colleague Dawn Woodward of Evelyn's Crackers. You start with brownies and then top them with a swirl of sweetened tahini that gives a delightful nutty depth of flavor and richness. Be sure to use untoasted sesame oil in the batter; the dark, toasted kind would be too strong.
1/4 cup untoasted sesame oil
3 tablespoons butter, coarsely chopped
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2/3 cup)
1/4 cup tahini (sesame seed paste), at room temperature
1 tablespoon brown sugar
How to Make It
Place an oven rack in the upper third of oven. Preheat oven to 350°.
Line an 8-inch square metal baking pan (not dark nonstick) with parchment paper; lightly coat parchment paper with cooking spray.
Combine sesame oil, butter, and chocolate in the top of a double boiler. Cook over simmering water until chocolate almost fully melts, stirring gently with a spatula. Remove top of double boiler; stir until chocolate fully melts. Pour chocolate mixture into a large bowl; add granulated sugar, stirring with a whisk until well combined. Add 2 eggs, stirring with a whisk. Stir in vanilla and salt. Fold in flour in two or three batches. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Combine tahini, brown sugar, and remaining 1 egg in a small bowl. Drop spoonfuls of tahini mixture onto brownie batter; swirl with the tip of a knife.
Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs clinging. Cool in pan on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes before serving.