I haven’t posted a Middle Eastern recipe in a while. This post centers around the thyme and olive oil dip called zatar. You may also see it spelled with an apostrophe (za’tar) or the number 3 (za3tar) with the apostrophe and 3 representing a guttural Arabic sound not found in the English language. As an American, you can most easily pronounce it “za-tar” – it’s not exactly how we Arabs pronounce it but it’s close. I think zatar is more common today than it used to be 5 or so years ago – I know it’s not quite as popular as hummus but it does have a small presence in bigger cities which as we all know, will make its way to other towns and cities in a few years. Growing up, my parents always kept a small tupperware of zatar in the refrigerator which my dad would snack on throughout the day or eat for breakfast. Usually we eat zatar with pita bread or in talami form (a zatar pizza). It has a very distinct blend of flavors that appeal to those who are thyme lovers and it makes a great breakfast food. It’s a super simple, super easy recipe to whip up and it keeps for a few weeks in the refrigerator.
Stay tuned for a delicious recipe with zatar coming on Thursday!
- 8T dried thyme
- 1 T sesame seeds, lightly toasted
- 1 tsp ground sumac*
- 6T olive oil
- Grind thyme leaves in a processor until powdery in form.
- Place in a bowl and add sesame seeds, sumac and olive oil. Stir well and serve with bread as a dip.
*Ground sumac can be found in Middle Eastern stores. The thyme and sumac tend to sink so be sure to stir every so often.