Tahini Swirls

Tahini Swirls

At the height of summer the Bread Baking Babes are sitting in the shade on the back porch of Natashya from Living in the Kitchen with Puppies, where they enjoy tahini swirls from the hot streets of Beirut.
These swirls were easy to make and I liked their sweet sesame taste. Somehow I ended up with only four swirls instead of six. Next time I will make them smaller as they leaned quite heavily in the direction of cinnamon rolls. As you can see from the picture below I also need to work on the transfer step onto the baking stone. I was sure to have used enough flour on the wooden paddle, but apparantly that wasn't the case. Don't use to much filling on the dough, as when making sushi restraint is key. Maybe one could change the 1:1 ratio of sugar and tahini to 1:2, to give the swirls a more nutty taste.

The motley crew

Sukkar bi Tahin - Beirut Tahini Swirls

Source: Home Baking by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid

Makes 6 golden brown, flaky textured coiled rounds, about 6 inches wide.


1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
About 2-1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp olive oil

3/4 cup tahini
3/4 cup sugar


In a medium bowl, dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm water. Stir in one cup of the flour, then add the sugar and oil and stir in. Incorporate a second cup of flour, then turn the dough out onto a well floured surface and knead for 5 minutes, or until smooth. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rise for 2 to 3 hours, until doubled in volume.
Meanwhile, place a baking stone or unglazed quarry tiles, if you have them, (or a baking sheet) on the middle oven rack and preheat the oven to 375 F. Mix together the tahini and sugar and stir until smooth. Set aside. Cut the dough into 6 equal pieces. Work with 3 at a time, keeping the others covered. Flatten each out on a lightly floured surface, then roll each out to a rectangle about 5 inches by 10 inches. Spread the top surface with 2 1/2 tablespoons of the filling mixture, spreading it almost to the edges. Roll up the rectangle from a long side into a cylinder, which will stretch as you roll to about 20 inches long. Anchor one end and coil the bread around itself, then tuck the end in. Flatten with the palm of your hand, then set aside, covered, while you fill and shape the other 2 rectangles.
Return to the first coil and roll out gently with a rolling pin. Roll the other 2 out a little and then return to the first one and roll it out a little more thinly, and so on, until you have rolled each to a round about 6 to 7 inches in diameter. A little filling may leak out—don’t worry, just leave it.
Place the breads on the hot baking stone or tiles (or baking sheet) and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown and flaky. Transfer to a rack to cool. Shape and bake the remaining 3 pieces of dough. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Natashya said...

I found parchment paper really helpful for moving the swirls.
I did have one batch that puffed up like yours, I had forgotten to roll them out.
Bet they taste great anyway, thanks so much for baking with us this month!

Baking Soda said...

Great job Andreas! When I was making them I was thinking cinnamon rolls (or maybe not thinking at all) because I rolled them cinnamon way. Not the desired effect but the taste was great. I can see why you would up the tahini.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Oh ... my goodness ... I'm thinking peanuts or almonds ground coarsely and mixing the butter and tahin with ground nuts ...
Your swirls look like beauties! Great to have you baking with us!!!