Tahini Sauce

1/2 cup tahini paste (liquids and solids both– not just the “oil”. )
1/4 – 1/2 cup warm tap water, more to desired consistency.
1 –2 tablespoons lemon juice ( more to taste)
1–2 tablespoon olive oil (optional)
2 garlic cloves (finely minced – use a garlic press)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (see notes)
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Optional additions ( To spice thing up a bit! Don’t use all, just one or two! ):

chili flakes or chili paste (like sambal olek or sriracha) for a spicy kick
a dash of soy sauce or liquid aminos, for more depth
a dash of toasted sesame oil ( for extra sesame flavor)
a teaspoon or two of zhoug for burst of flavor
a teaspoon or two of zaatar spice
fresh chopped chives, Italian parsley, mint or basil
a few tablespoons plain yogurt, for extra creamy richness. This is tasty!

If your tahini paste has separated try to mix it in the jar with a fork before measuring. If it’s very cold, this may not work very well, so be sure to use both the solids and the oil.

Make the tahini sauce in a 2 cup mason jar or medium bowl.

If your tahini sauce is very cold, whisk using a fork or mini whisk, with the warm water. Start with ¼ cup warm water, and add more to desired consistency. For a tahini “dressing” add more water or a couple tablespoon olive oil. Or feel free to keep it thick like a spread. Also keep in mind, different brands of tahini paste are thicker than others.

Once you start whisking, it will actually thicken.

Add the remaining ingredients to the jar – lemon juice, minced garlic, salt, pepper and whisk until creamy and smooth. It will thicken as it cools in fridge.

Taste and adjust salt and lemon to your liking.

Feel free to add any of the optional additions, to make this your own!

For example, try aleppo chili flakes, fresh chopped parsley and a pinch of zaatar to bump up the flavor. Or add a little yogurt, for both tanginess and creaminess.

This will keep for up to 10 days in the fridge.