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Coffee Tahini Milkshakes

When I was a little girl, I would have a chocolate milkshake about 3 times a week. I'm actually not sure how "little" I really was -- I was big enough to ride my bike a few miles from our house to the nearest Baskin Robbins, bring along a few bucks, pick up my double chocolate milkshake and ride back home. I must have been eleven or twelve. Nevertheless, I lived for these shakes, and the family that ran our neighborhood Baskin Robbins came to know me and blend my shake before I even ordered. One time, I picked up my usual and started my ride back home -- yes, I rode my bike one-handed while holding and sipping my milkshake in the other hand -- when inevitably, I lost my balance on the bike, and the milkshake took a sad, slow descent to the concrete. It was tragic. And so I picked up the milkshake's remains, bright pink straw and all, and I brought it all back into the Baskin Robbins. They made me a new one for free.

I think I get my love for ice cream from my dad. And I think he got his love for ice cream from his mom. The three of us are also huge lovers of breakfast. I remember sitting at Denny's with Nonnie as a kid, watching her order the Grand Slam and finish it all, or visiting Sonic down the road and ordering sundaes and milkshakes, or, one of the most memorable visits: Johnny Rocket's, where we both scarfed down chili dogs the size of our heads. Then she bought me this yellow striped sweater from GAP that I had told her I didn't want, but then I changed my mind during the chili dogs.

But there has always been something about ice cream in our family. Banana splits, ice cream sundaes, egg creams and dipped cones, ice cream cakes... suggesting an ice cream trip to my dad and seeing him completely light up. It's like a joy button. Sweets have a way of doing that to a person, which is probably why I love making them so much -- but ice cream certainly has a way about it.

Which is a long lead-in to telling you about these coffee tahini milkshakes.

Even with the grownup ingredients, these transported me right back to that bike, that street and that Baskin Robbins I knew as a child. (Maybe it's the whipped cream and my childish obsession with sprinkles.) A few people -- Carson included -- aren't big fans of tahini. It's a strange ingredient, and every time I use it in a recipe or mention it to a friend, I get a lot of scowls and confused frowns. It sounds fancier than it really is: it's made from toasted & ground sesame. On its own, it's very nutty and a little bitter; but when used as an ingredient in savory or sweet recipes, it adds a nutty, earthy flavor, which I really love in usually-super-sweet recipes. More often than not, you'll probably see it in hummus, salad dressings and baba ghanoush, and you can usually find it in your local grocery store or Trader Joe's. (Or you can make your own!)

But today, you're going to see it in a milkshake. Thanks to the genius Molly Yeh, I became inspired to tweak her tahini milkshake recipe just a bit, and thanks to the ever-versatile ingredient, tahini, these honestly turned out a lot better than I was expecting. (Not to say I wasn't expecting them to be great -- I was -- but I wasn't expecting them to be addicting, like I-cannot-stop-drinking-this-milkshake-somebody-help-me addicting.) The coffee ice cream gives these a little kick, which is perfectly offset by that earthy, subtle tahini vibe. I used a pint of Talenti's Cold Brew Coffee ice cream -- as if it's not incredible on its own -- and topped these off with some homemade whipped cream, crushed oreos and sprinkles. The entire recipe takes about 5 minutes tops, and I'm warning you now: you will be addicted. PUT YOUR SELF-CONTROL HAT ON.

Or don't. But prepare to swoon.

Coffee Tahini Milkshakes

Adapted from Molly Yeh

Prep time: 5 minutes | Servings: 4 small milkshakes, or 2 large (pictured)


1/2 cup tahini

2 cups coffee ice cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup whole milk

Crushed oreos, for topping

Whipped cream, for topping (homemade or store-bought)



Blend tahini, ice cream, vanilla and milk in a blender until combined. Pour into glasses and top with crushed oreos, whipped cream, additional crushed oreos and sprinkles. Enjoy!

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