Za’atar Roasted Carrots

Za'atar roasted carrots with labneh on a blue floral platter

Za’atar Roasted Carrots are a simple way to give roasted carrots a boost of exciting flavor with za’atar spice, the Lebanese spice blend of wild thyme, sumac, and sesame seeds. Dust carrots with za’tar both before and after roasting. Perhaps like you, I do a good bit of cooking for a crowd. Even if it’s…

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What is Za’atar, and How to Cook with Za’atar

Za'atar on the counter in white apilco dijon jar

Za’atar spice is a special blend of wild thyme, sumac, sesame seeds, and salt. Za’atar, a word that itself means “thyme” in Arabic, is pronounced with the emphasis on the first half of the word: ZA-tar. Za’atar, like any spice blend from throughout the Mediterranean, different regions and even different families in the same region…

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Za’atar Roasted Tomato Crostini with Labneh

Za'atar roasted tomatos with labneh on crostini, displayed on a cutting board, Maureen Abood

Za’atar with summer’s cherry or grape tomatoes, slow-roasted, are incredibly good! These delectable little bites of za’atar roasted tomatoes and labneh atop crostini stole the show at many of my events promoting my cookbook when I was on tour, and often make their appearance for cocktail hour at our house. Try substituting the crostini with…

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Oven-Fried Chicken Wings with Spicy Za’atar

Za'atar Chicken Wings,

Oven-fried chicken wings are right up there with deep fried in the flavor category–these are so good, you’ll want a double or triple batch to keep your crew happy! The za’atar, a Lebanese spice blend of wild thyme, sumac, and sesame, is lightly dusted on the wings after baking for an extra dimension of deliciousness.…

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Za’atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Za'atar roasted pumpkin seeds, Maureen Abood

Roasted pumpkin seeds are addictively good as they are, but adding a dusting of Lebanese za’atar spice takes them over the top! These are good for adults and kids alike. Make plenty. I stopped buying pumpkins years ago when I moved to Chicago. They were always so pricey there, ridiculously so. And then there was…

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Recipes to Relax with for your Memorial Day Weekend

Za'atar Potatoes,

Seems like Memorial Day has always, always been a getaway time for me. That getaway being, always, Up North in Michigan. It’s the kick-off, with complete excitement, for all that is summer in Michigan. If you live here, or you’ve been here, no further explanation is needed. But if you came to northern Michigan just…

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A Mother’s Day Menu, Lebanese-Style

Grapefruit Mimosa,

Along the book promo trail, someone said to me recently that it’s as though I’ve given birth to my own baby, my book. It’s kind of embarrassing to say it does feel a little that way. A little, it does. I suppose this is true of artists and their creative endeavors. We gestate, we make…

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Olive Oil Popcorn with Za’atar

I don’t remember seeing movies in the theater all that frequently growing up. It was a very occasional treat, and I’m sure this was not out of discipline or deprivation, but because it just wasn’t the industry it is today. My great movie-watching memories are rooted most comfortably at home, with my brother and sister…

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Danny Talami

Dan and I just celebrated our 6-month wedding anniversary, and I’ve made what can only be described as a most stunning discovery: seems I’ve married under false pretenses. Now before you go thinking something like this is going to happen, let me explain. Most everyone who spends even a short amount of time in my…

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Za’atar Fried Chicken and my cookbook photo shoot

When I take photos for Rose Water and Orange Blossoms, there are so many things to consider: the light, the lens, the plate, the background surface and the backdrop. And of course, the food itself. I run around the kitchen and down the stairs to get it all together, then hope the sun doesn’t fall…

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