Tahini-Ginger-Basil Dressing

Contributed by Salma Nassif

In Syrian cuisine Garlic is used so often in salads. But my friend told me recently that garlic and onion family are considered toxic in Ayurveda (especially so if consumed raw).  I tried to stop consuming them the way I used to and indeed my health improved, my face became more radiant and I had no dark circles around my eyes.

One good way to use a garlic-free yet flavorful healthy salad dressings is by using pomegranate molasses (sugar-free of course).

But to substitute the hot flavor of the garlic in salads I came up with a recipe. I used tahini because tahini is used as salad dressing also in Syrian cuisine, along with garlic. Since I know macrobiotics is the way to go for me when it comes to what I eat, I didn’t want to replace the garlic with hot pepper (hot pepper is a night-shade plant).  I replaced it with ginger and even though powdered ginger is less flavorful than fresh ginger, it worked well in the recipe. I also added basil and it tasted like a more westernized version of a salad dressing too! It was really good, so I'm sharing the recipe with you. I didn’t take precise measurements, so this is approximate:


  • Teaspoon of olive oil or more (as needed)
  • One tablespoon of vinegar
  • Two or three tablespoons tahini
  • One tablespoon lemon juice
  • Seasalt
  • A pinch of curcumin (or 1/5 teaspoon)
  • 1/3 or half a teaspoon of powdered ginger
  • Lots of dried basil leaves
  • Water if and as needed

How to:

So basically, you mix the ingredients together in a small bowl, until you get a saucy- mixture. If you need to add water, add some water.. sometimes I add the water of the pickles I make and that way I don’t need to add salt.

In the end, you add lots of basil.

And that’s it!