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Friday, April 13, 2012

Za'atar Spiced Fish

I like to pick up different spices and foods at the store, and then try them out at home. When I saw this little box of za'atar spice, I wanted it! But I wasn't really sure what to do with it. 

The ingredients on the side said thyme, sesame seeds, marjoram, sumac and salt. I wasn't sure what the flavor profile was for sumac, but I knew what the rest of it was. I also remembered seeing an episode of "Top Chef" where they put it on fish, so I created from there. 

I had some extra carrots and potatoes to use up as well, so the accompaniment is a spiced carrot potato puree. It was certainly a different flavor profile than we are used to, but I really enjoyed it. I think my next escapade will be to make some homemade za'atar mix, as it apparently is good with flatbread, which sounds delicious!


Za'atar Spiced Fish

For the carrot potato puree:
1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced 
1 pound carrots, peeled and diced 
2 teaspoons salt 
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon cumin 
1 teaspoon coriander 
1 teaspoon ground ginger 
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper 
Place potatoes and carrots in a large pot, and cover with water. Add salt. Bring to a boil, and boil until both are fork tender. Drain all but about 1/2 cup of the boiling water. Add butter and spices, and using immersion blender or regular blender, puree until smooth. Cover and set aside. 

For the fish: 
4 firm white fish filets (I used tilapia here) 
2 tablespoons za'atar spice 
1 teaspooon salt 
1 teaspoon pepper 
2 tablespoons olive oil 
Fresh lemon wedges 
Season fish liberally with za'atar spice, salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a non-stick pan, and saute fish approximately 3 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Serve on top of puree, with a lemon wedge. 



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