Each Thursday, Emily Vikre (a.k.a fiveandspice) will be sharing a new way to love breakfast -- because breakfast isn't just the most important meal of the day. It's also the most awesome.

Today: A nut butter altnernative, for when all you want to dirty is a knife.

Tahini toast from Food52

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There are days when you feel like whisking eggs and gently nudging them around a pan until they form soft, creamy curds. And there are days when you don’t. There are days when you feel like cutting butter into flour, or firing up the waffle iron, or stirring a pot of porridge, or flipping pancakes. And there are days when you don’t. There are days when you feel like you can handle cleaning the blender or waiting for the oven to preheat or pulling out mixing bowls. And there are days when you don’t.

Toast with nut butter is there for you on all those days when you don’t. It’s easy, filling, pretty nutritious, and tasty every time. But now, I’d like to introduce you to an alterna-nut butter option that fills the same requirement but is not actually a nut butter at all: tahini. Sesame seed paste! You probably already have a jar around for adding to hummus or stirring into salad dressing. Now it is time to start adding it to crunchy pieces of toast and topping it with lots of cinnamon, honey, and sea salt.

Tahini gives you the same warm, savory, goopy feeling that peanut butter does, but with the unique toasty fragrance of sesame seeds. I got this idea from Jess -- of the lovely blog Sweet Amandine -- who got it from a café in Jerusalem. She has you stir tahini, honey, and cinnamon together before spreading them on toast, but I prefer to splatter on one after the next in messy, Pollock-esque swirls and layers. I don’t use actual measurements as I feel that would defy my nut-buttered toast requirement of extreme ease. My preferred measurement for this is “generous,” and I apply it to all ingredients from the tahini to the honey to the thickness of the bread for toasting. And don’t -- do. not. -- leave off the sprinkling of sea salt. It pulls all the flavors together and makes it sparkle. Appropriately generous sprinkling of cinnamon and sea salt cover up this breakfast’s fundamentally lazy nature and make it seem sophisticated. And all you had to do was dirty one knife.

Tahini toast from Food52

Tahini Toast 

Serves 1

1 thick slice of your favorite toasting bread
Ground cinnamon
Flaky sea salt

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here. 

Photos by Emily Vikre

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I like to say I'm a lazy iron chef (I just cook with what I have around), renegade nutritionist, food policy wonk, and inveterate butter and cream enthusiast! My husband and I own a craft distillery in Northern Minnesota called Vikre Distillery (www.vikredistillery.com), where I claimed the title, "arbiter of taste." I also have a doctorate in food policy, for which I studied the changes in diet and health of new immigrants after they come to the United States. I myself am a Norwegian-American dual citizen. So I have a lot of Scandinavian pride, which especially shines through in my cooking on special holidays. Beyond loving all facets of food, I'm a Renaissance woman (translation: bad at focusing), dabbling in a variety of artistic and scientific endeavors.


mariana19 April 15, 2014
This one takes me back home! I love it. In Egypt (where I'm from) we used to mix Tahini with black molasses and put on toast/pita bread. It used to be one of my favourite treats as a child and an easy alternative to the amazing recipe above!
Debbie April 2, 2014
Yum! Just had this for breakfast. The salt totally makes it.
fiveandspice April 6, 2014
Doesn't it?! :)
sil E. March 31, 2014
Tahini (or hazelnut butter) & honey is my favourite snack!
I'll skip the butter but I'll try it with a sprinkle of flaky salt next time.
Tahini + blackstrap molasses or brown rice syrup + a spinkle of chia seeds or bee polen is also delicious. oh my, i'm hungry..
fiveandspice April 6, 2014
Mia March 28, 2014
This reminds me... one of my good friends is Turkish and she shared a tahini spread with me - it was tahini mixed with grape molasses. So yummy!
fiveandspice March 29, 2014
That sounds wonderful. I think I'm going to try it with pomegranate molasses!
healthierkitchen March 30, 2014
grape molasses and date syrup are both quite a bit sweeter than pomegranate! Let us know how that is!
ATG117 March 28, 2014
And I thought I was original. I do it minus the butter and cinnamon. So delicious.
fiveandspice March 29, 2014
Marian B. March 27, 2014
I am all about some tahini toast -- I'll have to try it with honey!
Marian B. March 27, 2014
Also one time I spread tahini and the genius mustard greens harissa on a tortilla for lunch at work and people thought I was weird, but it was delicious. Just FYI.
fiveandspice March 27, 2014
I think that sounds totally delicious. I like weird-delicious.
Brette W. March 27, 2014
I remember looking at Marian and being like, what are you doing you must be reaaaally hungry.
Posie (. March 27, 2014
i really love this! it would be so good with wheat germ sprinkled on top (or flaky coconut)
fiveandspice March 27, 2014
Oh my gosh, flaky coconut, yes!
Kate March 27, 2014
This is such an awesome idea! I have so, so much tahini in my fridge. I'll have to give this a try.
fiveandspice March 27, 2014
Thank you! I really love it.
aargersi March 27, 2014
you did NOT just say alterna-nut :-)
Marian B. March 27, 2014
fiveandspice March 27, 2014
Oh yes, yes I did.
healthierkitchen March 27, 2014
sounds great! At a stop on their book tour I heard Yottam Ottolenghi say he loves tahini and date syrup sandwiches!
fiveandspice March 27, 2014
Yum! I have to find some date syrup and try that.