Joanne Weir Follow @ChefJoanneWeir

Za'atar Spice Blend

Za'atar Spice Blend

Za'atar is a mix of dried herbs like hissop and sesame seeds and used on EVERYTHING...salad, labneh (drained yogurt cheese) and seeded bread with olive oil.  The mixture is as varied as the people making it and while visiting Israel, I saw one vendor use hyssop in his za'atar while another added thyme.  One used sumac, another added winter savory and no matter which one I tried, they were all incredibly delicious.

Makes about 1/2 cup of za'atar.


3 Tbs. dried thyme
1 Tbs. lightly toasted sesame seeds
1 Tbs. ground sumac
1/2 tsp. dried oregano or marjoram
1/4 tsp. kosher salt


Put dried thyme, lightly toasted sesame seeds, ground sumac, dried oregano or marjoram, and  kosher salt in a spice grinder. Pulse a few times to mix and break up some of the seeds—there should still be many whole seeds visible.
Store in a cool, dark place for up to six months.