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Sea Island Benne Seeds

Slaves brought benne seeds from Africa to the Carolina Sea Islands in the early 18th century and cultivated them in hidden gardens for nearly a century as a staple food seed for rice cookery. By the time of our Revolution, benne seeds and their oil had earned a place at table in the Big House, and benne became the focus of intense Antebellum market farming. Slaves and masters alike consumed the plant at every growth stage, from the tender young leaves to the petite seed pods similar to okra, and, later in the growing season, the mature dried seeds we know as sesame. When heated in cooking, Anson Mills new crop benne seeds possess lovely field flavors, a characteristic nuttiness, and deep burnt-honey notes. Unlike modern sesame seeds, our benne asserts its culinary presence by magnifying umami nuances in foods, making it unparalleled for use in both modern and historic recipes.

This product is gluten free.