A Middle Eastern seasoning, having the herb as the main ingredient, with sumac (or other tart-flavored equivalent) and sesame seeds. .
What is Zaatar? Is it a Spice, Seasoning, Condiment, or more
The mainstay ingredients of authentic Zaatar the mix, include 1) the ground Zaatar herb with the scientific name of Origanum Syriacum1 which is native to the Middle-East and is believed to be the same Hyssop herb plant in biblical references 2 and combines earthy flavors from thyme, oregano, marjoram, and savory with a peppery finish 2) Sumac powder spice (lemony but without the acidity), and 3) sesame seeds roasted (nutty, crunchy) 4) optional pinch of sea salt.The texture of an authentic mix should not be that of a fine spice powder, but more course, herbal, fluffy and free flowing, and somewhat nutty from freshly roasted sesame seeds.Therefore, most commercial brands use substitutes and fillers to mimic the traditional taste of Zaatar, which results in a wide range of qualities and flavor profiles.Zaatar has an enduring heritage in the Levant/East Mediterranean region as an essential kitchen table staple because it is simple, delicious and offers many relishes.Also, a popular and traditional Zaatar flat bread recipe (Manaesh or Manakish), in Middle-Eastern bakeries is spreading a pasty mix of olive oil and Zaatar on flat breads or pizza dough and is best served piping hot out of an oven (optional toppings may include chopped fine tomatoes, onions, mint leaves), .Examples include bagel and cream cheese, yogurts, salads, vegetable, eggs, meats, fruit, popcorn, and others.More recently, Zaatar has experienced creative culinary incarnations in North America beyond its traditional uses in the Middle East.To really set the standard and raise your expectations for Zaatar, we invite you to try the Tyme Foods brand, conveniently sold here or on Amazon.Importantly, the processing of higher quality Zaatar herb is labor-intensive, and extensive, and employs manual techniques to wash and sift only the tender leaves of the dried plant rather than stalks, stems, and twigs.Premium grades undergo additional processing such as removing a cottony layer found on the thyme leaves, which enhances the purity and flavor.With Zaatar plant leaves, a high or low content of the thymol oil primarily, followed by carvacoral drives the flavor intensity.Within the cultivation regions of the Middle-East, essential oil content of the Zaatar leaves varies widely, from few to forty grams, per kilogram.The Zaatar herb plant is harvested during the summer months and washed in water to clean its velvety leaves of accumulated soil dust. .
Is Zaatar thyme or oregano?
), za’atar is generally a combination of dried oregano, thyme, and/or marjoram (woodsy and floral), with sumac (tangy and acidic) and toasted sesame seeds (nutty and rich).The herb plant Zaatar is sometimes referred to as the Middle-Eastern or Syrian Oregano and sometimes translated from the Arabic to English as Wild Thyme.The herb plant Zaatar is sometimes referred to as the Middle-Eastern or Syrian Oregano and sometimes translated from the Arabic to English as Wild Thyme.Zaatar has some truly impressive health benefits, including its ability to improve the immune system, boost skin health, build strong bones, increase circulation, clear out the respiratory tracts, soothe inflammation, boost energy, improve mood, aid memory, and treat chronic diseases.Its taste is unlike za’atar or anything I’ve had around the world and is good for upset stomachs and getting rid of gas, among other benefits.Some common uses for za’atar include: Mix za’atar with olive oil and drizzle it over flatbread: Pita, naan, and other flatbreads are traditional in Middle Eastern cuisine, but you could also use the infused oil with thick slices of Italian or French bread that are crisped up under the broiler.In the blend shown above, thyme and oregano or marjoram stand in for the za’atar herb, which is rarely available in the United States.Zaatar has some truly impressive health benefits, including its ability to improve the immune system, boost skin health, build strong bones, increase circulation, clear out the respiratory tracts, soothe inflammation, boost energy, improve mood, aid memory, and treat chronic diseases.Cooking With Za’atar Often it is baked into flatbread, mixed with olive oil or tahini to make a dip, tossed into salads, rubbed onto meat, or sprinkled over hummus.One of its most traditional uses is sprinkled over labneh, a Lebanese strained yogurt, creating a robust dip for pita bread.The herb plant Zaatar is sometimes referred to as the Middle-Eastern or Syrian Oregano and sometimes translated from the Arabic to English as Wild Thyme.The herb plant Zaatar is sometimes referred to as the Middle-Eastern or Syrian Oregano and sometimes translated from the Arabic to English as Wild Thyme. .
 Used in Levantine cuisine, both the herb and spice mixture are popular throughout the Mediterranean region of the Middle East.According to Ignace J. Gelb, an Akkadian language word that can be read sarsar may refer to a spice plant.Thymus capitatus (also called Satureja capitata) is a species of wild thyme found throughout the hills of the Levant and Mediterranean Middle East. Thymbra spicata, a plant native to Greece and to Palestine/Israel and has been cultivated in North America by Syrian, Palestinian, and Lebanese immigrants for use in their za'atar preparations since the 1940s. This species is also extremely common in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Israel, and Palestine, and is used by peoples of the region to make one local variety of the spice mixture. Both oregano and marjoram are closely related Mediterranean plants of the family Lamiaceae, so it is unsurprising that they could be used interchangeably.Za'atar as a prepared condiment is generally made with ground dried thyme, oregano, marjoram, or some combination thereof, mixed with toasted sesame seeds, and salt, though other spices such as sumac might also be added.Traditionally, housewives throughout the Fertile Crescent, Iraq, and the Arabian Peninsula made their own variations of za'atar, which was unknown in North Africa. This general practice is cited by Western observers of Middle Eastern and North African culinary cultures as one reason for their difficulties in determining the names of the different spices used.Za'atar, both the herb and the condiment, is popular in Algeria, Armenia, Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, and Turkey.Pliny the Elder mentions a herb maron as an ingredient of the Regale Unguentum ("Royal Perfume") used by the Parthian kings in the 1st century CE.The Children of Israel are also said to have used a clump of ezov/za'atar stalks to daub the blood of the Paschal sacrifice on the doorposts of their houses before leaving bondage in Egypt (Exodus 12:22).Much later, ezov/za'atar appears in the 2nd century CE Mishnah as an ingredient in food at that time in Judea ('Uktzin 2:2), while elsewhere in the Talmud there is mention of herbs ground into oil (a preparation called mish'cha t'china in Aramaic, משחא טחינא), but it is not specified whether this was like the za'atar mix known today. For Palestinian refugees, plants and foods such as za'atar also serve as signifiers of the house, village, and region from which they hailed. This mixture spread on a dough base and baked as a bread, produces manakeesh bi zaatar. In the Mediterranean region of Middle East, ka'ak (a soft sesame seed bread), is sold in bakeries and by street vendors with za'atar to dip into or with a za'atar filling. It is also eaten with labneh (yogurt drained to make a tangy, creamy cheese), and bread and olive oil for breakfast, most commonly in Jordan, Palestine, Israel, Syria, and Lebanon, as well as other places in the Arab world. The recipe is simple, consisting of fresh thyme, finely chopped onions, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and salt.Maimonides (Rambam), a medieval rabbi and physician who lived in Spain, Morocco, and Egypt, prescribed za'atar for its health advancing properties in the 12th century. Since ancient times, people in the Mediterranean region of Middle East have thought za'atar could be used to reduce and eliminate internal parasites.
What is Za'atar, the Spice Mix That We Can't Stop Sprinkling?
), za'atar is generally a combination of dried oregano, thyme, and/or marjoram (woodsy and floral), with sumac (tangy and acidic) and toasted sesame seeds (nutty and rich).Za’atar encompasses such a wide range of flavors that it can be the bright note that both enlivens and anchors sliced tomatoes, the unifying force in a salad of refreshing smashed cucumbers and salty, fatty feta, and the replacement for lemon and herbs on a roast chicken.In the Middle East, za'atar is often eaten with oil-dipped bread or labneh, or spread onto flatbread dough before it’s baked into man’oushe. .
Wild Zaatar Oregano: An Update – Garden Betty
I’m a slacker in the pruning department, so my wild zaatar seems to be in a constant state of flowering — though that hasn’t affected its growth habit or bold flavor.When I do remember to give the shrub its annual trim (by hacking off the top third of its stems), it grows back bushier and healthier within weeks.Origanum syriacum grows wild in the mountains of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Israel, but has only recently entered cultivation due to increasing demand.While wild zaatar has been used for centuries in labneh (strained yogurt), manaeesh (flatbread), and herbal teas in Middle Eastern cultures, Westerners have begun to take notice of this exotic herb; now, you’ll find it on pizza, popcorn, and baked potato! .
Za'atar Spice Blend Recipe
I’m having a moment with za’atar, a classic Middle Eastern seasoning.Za’atar is a unique blend of herbal, earthy, savory, tangy and salty flavors.Za’atar has been enjoyed for centuries on the other side of the world, yet it has gained popularity in the U.S. over the past five years or so.To be honest, I didn’t understand the fuss when I sampled a za’atar blend from Trader Joe’s several years ago.They simply mixed their house blend of za’atar with olive oil and served it with crusty bread, for dipping.I fell in love with za’atar that night, and couldn’t stop going back for more.Za’atar is versatile and complements many savory meals—you’ll find all of my suggestions below.You can sprinkle sumac on hummus, and it’s also irresistible on watermelon and cucumber with some flaky salt (the combination reminds me of Tajín seasoning).Or, serve bowls of za’atar mixed with olive oil and crusty bread, for dipping.Mix it with olive oil and drizzle it over labneh, thick yogurt (plain Greek or Siggi’s), hummus or baba ganoush.Roll extra-thick rounds of labneh or a log of goat cheese in the dry spice mixture.Serve it as an appetizer with pita wedges, crackers or crisp, raw vegetables.Use the olive oil mixture as a marinade, or the plain spice blend as a dry rub.Shatta: Thick green hot sauce made with jalapeño, parsley, cilantro and walnuts.
Za'atar Spice Blend Recipe Recipe
Every spring, when za’atar grows in abundance, Arab and Palestinian women dry reams of it on rooftops and patios before grinding it with sesame, salt, sumac, and, occasionally, thyme for a homemade version they use all year. .
Traditional Lebanese Zaatar Blend (za'atar)
This post shows you how to make a simple, authentic Lebanese Za’atar spice blend.Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend with some differences depending on the region.Za’atar spice blend is something that I probably consume at least 3-4 times a week and is practically synonymous with Middle Eastern Cuisine.Used as a marinade for vegetables and proteins, to top flatbreads – like this homemade pita, sprinkled over dips (like this Vegan Moutabal Aubergine Dip ) and hummus, and sprinkled liberally over a whole variety of dishes – za’atar is an amazing addition to your meals.With it has a herby, savory, earthy flavor with that hint of bitter lemon-y sumac – it’s a unique spice blend to experiment within the kitchen.While you can buy za’atar powder in stores, I’ve yet to find one that tastes as good as it does homemade.Plus, I’ll be showing you how to make your homemade zaatar spice blend with fresh or dried oregano.Sumac is something I use a lot within my cooking – with its signature tangy, almost lemon-like flavor – it’s key to this authentic za’atar blend.If you decide that you want to make your spice blend with fresh oregano, you can easily dry this yourself at home.Keep a close eye on the drying process so that the leaves don’t burn (as the temperature is a bit higher).You can then grind the dried oregano to a fine powder for the za’atar spice mix.Toast the sesame seeds in a dry pan (don’t add oil) over medium heat. .