Remember Blanche, a spoon of Za’atar a day will keep the doctor away!” said my late Aunt Bahieh, who lived to be 95 years old. My 96 year old grandmother also eats za’atar every morning and she is still going strong. As a child my mother was told to eat za’atar for breakfast for mental alertness, and she ended up with straight As and was crowned the class valedictorian. Ok I’m not saying this spice mix will make you a Rhodes Scholar and centenarian, but judging from my family’s longevity and alertness, I think they might be onto something. Za’atar is a zesty Middle Eastern spice mix containing savory (or thyme,) sumac, sesame seeds and salt. This spice is extremely popular in Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan. To learn about the nutritional benefits, as well as get simple ways you can incorporate Za’atar into your everyday diet, check out my brand new video below:
Za’atar is readily available in Middle Eastern and Arab markets, as well as some good organic fair-trade varieties online. I myself am partial to the za’atar from Palestine, which has this authentic flavor that reminds me of my childhood. I haven’t been able to find a za’atar that tastes like my grandmother’s until I tasted the spice mix from Sea Of Herbs. I am not getting compensated by Sea of Herbs, but they are rewarding my viewers with 20% off their za’atar between now and March 31st, 2018 if you use the coupon code BLANCHE20. You can also try making your own fresh za’atar, which is quite easy. You can use thyme but savory gives a better result because it has hints of both oregano and thyme. You can store za’atar in your pantry for several months. Here is a simple recipe to get you started:
1 tbsp powdered SUMAC
1 tbsp toasted SESAME SEEDS
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Put all of the ingredients into a spice grinder and pulse until a powder is formed, about 30 to 45 seconds. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 months
Are there favorite ways you like to eat za’atar? Share your ideas in the comment section below. I will have a fun vegan/ vegetarian cooking episode next Wednesday that will also incorporate Za’atar, so look out for that one soon by subscribing to my YouTube CHANNEL!
Sahtein (To your health)