February 22, 2015 • Category: Salads
This is the epitome of the rural, traditional salad found in all Lebanese village homes. Lebanese folks would go out to forage some wild zaatar (wild oregano, called zubayr) and get back to make a quick salad. This salad is dressed with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice or sumac (when lemons are not available) water. Olives and pita bread complete this frugal meal. In the US or North America, some clipped oregano would make a fine substitute.
INGREDIENTS: 2 servings or more
2 cups fresh wild zaatar or grown oregano
2 shallots sliced or 1 small onion or 1/2 bunch scallions, chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 tablespoon sumac soaked in 1/3 cup water or lemon juice
Olive oil, to taste
salt, to taste
1. Place the ingredients in a bowl and toss with the dressing. Serve immediately with pita bread and some olives.
9 Comments • Comments Feed
I remember your foraging adventure 🙂 I’d love to try this with fresh oregano from my herb pots this summer.
On February 23, 2015 at 7:53 pm
Oh lovely! We hardly every get the real fresh zaatar here, just the regular Thyme in a few varieties. But my friend in Dubai always makes sure to make me some of her zaatar mix for me when I visit. Looks lovely!
On February 23, 2015 at 10:05 pm
@Meeta: Thanks and yes, I think the Lebanese in Dubai must always have their stash 🙂
On February 24, 2015 at 1:44 pm
maritachicita @ mydinner.co.uk says:
I never heard of this salad before but it looks very interesting. I am pretty sure I cannot find wild Zaartar in England, but I ma try this recipe with oregano 🙂
On April 28, 2015 at 11:44 am
Inaam Abdulkarim says:
I found wild thyme yesterday and I was so excited to try and make my own zaatar. I grew up with my grandma so I remember exactly how it was done. It came out perfectly delicious but I noticed the Zaatar has a very strong Zaatar like taste, a hint of bitterness typical of zaatar. My question is, do you know if that is something that might go away as the Zaatar gets older? Il ‘ m planning of making more to gift to friends but that is a concern.
On June 4, 2015 at 1:40 pm
@Inaam: I agree, the assertive scent of zaatar does tend to fade with time, but I am thinking it will take several months or at least one year for that to happen. Your friends will be so delighted to get real, homemade, zaatar, they wont mind the scent! I mean when one buys it at the store, it has no scent, except for the scent of salt and sumac! You can try adding more sumac but then again, it is a matter of taste and some people like very little sumac. I like lots of toasted sesame seeds and going easy on the salt. In Aleppo, I hear they add flax seeds to their zaatar and some ground nuts. If the scent is really assertive, they will just use less, and it will last longer 🙂
On June 4, 2015 at 3:33 pm
Thank you for your valuable advice!
On September 2, 2015 at 1:16 pm
Marlene Burchill says:
I am Aussie recently I have been teaching myself to cook Lebanese and Turkish food. My family love the new taste’s different but so tasty. Recently I tried to make Crispy Persial Rice – it was OK but not correct I could not achieve the crusty rice bottom. Another dish that I believe I have mastered is stuffed zucchini; delicious
Thank you for your wonderful recipes with more to come hopefully
On July 15, 2022 at 12:08 am