An ancient ally

Sesame is a unique edible seed. The consumption of whole or crushed seeds as well as sesame oil goes back to ancient times. Cultivation of sesame is a practice as old as of rice, dating back to 6,000BC. Its cultivation started in Palestine and Syria around 3000BC. Evidence from Egypt testifies that the ancient Egyptians were familiar with sesame cultivation and considered it a valuable high energy source of nutrition. Inscriptions kept in the British Museum report that the Assyrian Gods were drinking a wine made of sesame before they charged into battle.

Sesame was so precious to the Assyrians that they negotiated their loans and debts in either silver or sesame seeds . Herodotus, the father of History, reports that the Babylonians knew sesame cultivation (1750BC), as well as how to make sesame snacks.

Sesame seeds have also been found in the tomb of Tutankhamen (14 th century BC) as well as in the cape of the Greek island of Thera or Santorini. Marco Polo sites that in 1298 AD the Persians used sesame and its products as a valuable source of nutrition, for medical uses, as massage oil, lighting oil and in cosmetics