Sesame bars

Sesame bars


Lyndey and Blair's Taste of Greece
40 small squares or triangles
Chris Chen

These are one of the cornerstones of Greek confectionery and traditionally consist only of sesame seeds baked with honey. However, Greece has an abundance of almonds, too, and they make a wonderful addition. They can be cut into squares or rectangles but I think triangles are prettier.


Quantity Ingredient
1 1/2 cups sesame seeds
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1 cup honey, (see Lyndey’s note)


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Line a large slab tin with a sheet of baking paper, leaving the paper to extend over the sides of the tin. Place the sesame seeds and almonds over the baking paper and bake until lightly golden.
  2. Meanwhile, place the honey in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat a little and cook the honey until it turns a deeper caramel colour. Test by dropping a small spoonful into a glass of cold water; the honey should form solid threads that are flexible, not brittle.
  3. Working quickly and carefully, add the warm toasted sesame seeds and almonds to the honey. Stir to mix, then pour into the lined slab tin. Spread the mixture out with a spatula to a uniform thickness of about 3–4 mm and press down to flatten.
  4. Allow to cool a little then, using the baking paper, lift the pasteli from the tin and place on a large board. Use a heavy knife to score into strips, then squares and then into triangles. When cooler, cut through the markings. Store in an airtight container with baking paper between layers – they will keep for quite a long time.

Lyndey’s note

  • To make measuring the honey easy, brush or spray the measuring cup with oil first and the honey will easily slide off.
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