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What can I do with my zaatar?

I've come into possession of a rather large pouch of good Israeli zaatar, and although I don't want to use it up too fast, I don't want it to sit around till it's lost its flavor.

So, besides mixing it with olive oil to dip bread in (which is yummy, but I don't eat a lot of bread anymore), what are some other recommended uses for zaatar?

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  1. i add it to all sorts of stuff. i cook a big batch of sauteed mushrooms each week to have with eggs or on toast for meals during the week and fry it in the oil, along with dried thyme before putting the mushrooms.

    it's great with sauteed peppers or tomatoes, onions, fennel and shrimp too.

    1. Roll goat cheese in it. Add it to Greek yogurt as dip or as a marinade for chicken or pork and grill. Add it to butter and spread it on good bread and broil. Stir it into plain hummus. Add it to a falafel mix. Goes well with sliced cucumbers, baked potatoes and grilled onions.

      1. I first heard of zaatar here

        http://chocolateandzucchini.com/archi...

        for everyday, I sprinkle it on pan fried chunks of potato, cottage potatoes.

        1. I used it in a fish stew the other night, which was very good. But my favorite, and very easy, use is from a Rozanne Gold recipe. It's just za'atar mixed with some finely grated parmesan cheese and olive oil, spooned over ripe tomatoes. Toasted pine nuts on top. Delicious every time!

           
          1. lebanese flat bread http://arabic-food.blogspot.com/2008/...

            lebanese meat pie http://www.tasteofbeirut.com/2011/05/...

            6 Replies
            1. re: alkapal

              Those meat pies sound wonderful! I've added that recipe to my must try list. I'm curious whether you would suggest adding za'atar in addition to the spices mentioned, or as a substitute (since the spice combination already calls for sumac).
              ETA - Now that I think about it, it would probably depend upon the ingredients in the za'atar one had on hand.

              1. re: L.Nightshade

                hi nightshade, my lebanese friend makes a version of these meat pies, cheating by using pillsbury crescent dough. they are nice size as snacks. very satisfying to eat, too. ;-).

                i'd use the za'atar as a substitute for the listed herbs.

                za'atar is primarily thyme, in any event. so, in general, anywhere you'd use thyme is a good place for za'atar. using it in salad dressing is nice, too.

                quickie flatbread: brush olive oil on tortilla, sprinkle with za'atar & bake…et voilá! (even can microwave!) you can also bake pillsbury dough like the tortilla. you can also do roll-ups & bake. brush outside with olive oil. nice cocktail snackie.. (would be good with some goat cheese, too).

                1. re: alkapal

                  I'd still add the cinnamon thought. I find it so compelling in meat dishes with Middle
                  Eastern or North African flavors. Mmm. Thanks for the links and ideas!

                  1. re: L.Nightshade

                    oh yes, the cinnamon. that is always in those meat pies.

                  2. re: alkapal

                    Well alkapal, this recipe stuck in my head, so I made a cheating version today, using only ingredients I had on hand. I had some beef roast that was already cooked, which I minced as finely as I could, added onion, garlic, tahini, pomegranate molasses, pine nuts, tomatoes, cinnamon, parsley, and, of course, za'atar. I baked them in frozen/thawed puff pastry. The puff paste didn't work very well for the basket shape, so I switched to empanada style packages. For an afternoon project with stuff on hand, these were great. Lovely flavors. I can't wait to try them according to the actual directions! Thanks for the link!

                     
                    1. re: L.Nightshade

                      nightshade, great job! those look so neat and delicious. i like the empanada style, too! isn't everything better wrapped in dough of some sort? LOL. it is nice to find a re-purpose for the leftover beef roast. (i usually end up making a hash with potatoes and onions, but you've given me a good idea here).
                      ~~~~~
                      i was looking at the "canister" doughs yesterday to see if i could find the "french loaf" one, and i did find it from pillsbury. i've been noodling around the recipe idea that uses it to make stromboli (or what one recipe called "stuffed bread"). http://www.tasteofhome.com/Recipes/Sp...

                      and when i was on the pillsbury site, i saw these cute soup "bread bowls." http://www.pillsbury.com/recipes/toma... i like the idea of using the flaky biscuits with the sesame seeds. (i love sesame anything).

              2. I like it in lentils.

                1. It is great for breakfast - both with pita bread. 1- Mix zaatar with olive oil and brush it on the inside of a split pita bread. Toast under the broiler. 2 - Spread a cream cheese on a pita bread and sprinkle zaatar on top then toast under broiler.

                  1. It's a blend of sumac, sesame seeds, that often includes thyme, cumin, things like that. Some is coarser then others. If you can find a shaker with holes large enough to work with your zahtar, adding it to the condiments on the table is a fun way to let people try it on whatever they like. Or just put it in a small dish and use it in pinches. It can be added to food before cooking or after. It's good sprinkled on cheeses like feta. Maybe on eggs? It's a fun challenge trying to find how you like it best. Or maybe you won't? Adventure!

                    1. I've been using it as the main seasoning on my roasted vegetables. It's going fast.

                      1. Everything. It makes everything delicious. If you're on a diet, put it in plain cottage cheese. It's transformational.

                        1. I make a za'atar crusted striped bass with a spiced carrot puree. I season both sides of the fish with salt, pepper, and za'atar. I cook it skin side down in olive oil for about 3 minutes, then flip for 3 minutes more.

                          1. All these great ideas - looks like I'll have a lot to try out!

                            1. http://www.food52.com/recipes/5032_sh...

                              We made this for Sunday dinner and loved it. Good use of zaatar.

                              1. Its great on potato wedges in the oven & I put it on my chorizo traybake.

                                1 pack raw chorizo sausages cut into 4
                                1 pack pork & leek sausages cut into 4
                                very liberal dusting of zaatar
                                olive oil
                                seasoning
                                4-6 roasted red peppers torn into strips
                                fresh mini corn cobs, in 1/2
                                new potatoes, in 1/2 length ways
                                2 large red onions, in wedges
                                4 large garlic cloves, skin on & hit with knife
                                large closed cup mushrooms, in big chunks

                                Sling everything in a roasting tin, mix & put in oven for 45 mins, turning half way through. Serve with chunky bulgar wheat salad.

                                1. Over the weekend, my son roasted some red bell peppers which he marinated in olive oil, crushed garlic and zaatar. Delicious!

                                  1. I sprinkle it on hummus.

                                    1. My SO made a salad with shredded cucumber, red onion, and whole olives with a zaatar viniagrette last night (from The Spice Bible ... a cookbook we've been loving recently). I think my own zaatar might have lots its pep but the shredded cucumber and onion salad is a keeper.