Tahini and Sesame Bring Sweet Complexity to the Pastry Kitchen

Julie Chernoff

Growing up in suburban Detroit in the late ’60s and early ’70s meant eating countless lunches with my father and grandfather at Esquire Deli in Southfield, where nearly every meal ended with a shard of halvah cut from one of the many loaves visible behind the deli counter. Made by whipping boiling sugar syrup into tahini, halvah was a revelation that fascinated me with its texture—a little...