Black sesame seeds have a stronger flavor than the white seeds. These black seeds are an essential ingredient in Chinese and Japanese cooking and give food more of an earthier taste opposed to the white seeds. In Western and Middle Eastern cooking, sesame seeds are used like poppy seeds to decorate and flavor breads, cakes, and confectionary, such as halva. The Chinese coat foods with sesame before cooking to give them a crunchy texture; sesame prawn balls and toast are popular Chinese appetizers. In Japan, the seeds are toasted and sprinkled on rice and other dishes, and are used in dressings for salads and vegetables.