Sesame seeds are small, oval-shaped seeds that come from the sesame plant, scientifically known as Sesamum indicum. They are widely used in cooking and baking, particularly in Asian, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean cuisines. They are available in two main varieties: white sesame seeds and black sesame seeds. White sesame seeds are the most common and are used in a variety of dishes, including bread, pastries, salads, and stir-fries. Black sesame seeds have a stronger, slightly bitter flavor and are often used as a garnish or ingredient in sweets and desserts.