Oil press. तिल எள் എണ്ണ தமிழ் நாடு. Feature story photo: India

Uploaded 5 May 2012
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© Etan Doronne
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Photo license: © All rights reserved

India is home to sesame but Tahini - sesame paste - is nowhere to be found.

Although farmers from Rajasthan to Tamil Nadu harvest sesame and every little village had it's own mill and oil press shop, I couldn't find sesame paste. So for my favor dish, Tahini, I had to get sesame oil, buy seeds at the market, then grind the seeds in a mortar & pestle or a 'mixi' (little chutney blender, more like a coffee bean grinder) while adding in the oil until reaching a smooth paste consistency.

So where does the paste disapear to in the process of turning seeds into oil in those mills ?

Well, it's a stage on the process but it never stops there. After 2 hours of pressing the seeds the oil is all drained and the leftover 'cake' (as seen in the photo here) is given out to cows...


My India: Where every village is home


Oil press, sesame seeds & peanut mill. तिल எள் ಎಳ್ಳು എണ്ണ എള്ള് தமிழ் நாடு Tamilnadu, India

1 response

  • Michele Wambaugh

    Michele Wambaugh (Deleted) gave props (5 May 2012):


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