Old Herbs Get a Life

Categories: Thrifty Cook
ZaatarIllustration NT.jpg
Illustration by Cyndi Coon

You've heard that dried spices and herbs only last so long before they lose their potency and should be tossed. Well, what if you are cheap and can't part so easily with your spices? They are expensive, after all. Here is a recipe to use up your about-to-expire green spices to make a tasty Zaatar bread.


The Zaatar spice blend is mostly green herbs with ground sumac and toasted sesame seeds added then mixed with olive oil and used as a spread for pita or flat bread. The taste is very nutty. This is a feel-good dish to make for others -- you'll use up outdated spices and make enough to share with friends.

(get the recipe after the jump)

Ingredients:
Oregano
Basil
Thyme
Marjoram
Sage
Dill
(Any green herbs or spices that are on their last legs)
ground sumac
Toasted sesame seeds, ground
Olive Oil
1 Tbls lemon peel or zest of one lemon


Preparation:
1. Grab a medium to large bowl. Dump in all of your dried green herbs and spices that have reached their life cycle. The varied amounts are fine. Just mix them all together.
2. Grab a cookie sheet, cover it with sesame seeds, toast them in the over on 350 degrees until lightly brown.
3. Remove from oven, cool the crush sesame seeds with a pestle in a small bowl.
4. Combine with green herbs.
5. Add in olive oil, enough to create a paste out of the herbs. It shouldn't be dry.
6. Sprinkle on a tsp of sumac if you have some on hand
7. Add the zest of one lemon to bowl
8.Spread on pita or flat bread, and bake or broil until heated through (350 degrees for 6 to 9 minutes)

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Photo: Cyndi Coon
Zaatar spread on pita

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