Zaa’tar- is a savory blend of dried herbs and spices typically includes dried wild thyme, toasted sesame seeds, sumac and salt.
It has an earthy & pungent flavor. Mixtures do vary depending on area and can be referred to as red (having a higher quantity of sumac) or green (having a lower quantity of sumac) and can include cumin, oregano and fennel seeds.
However any of these mixtures can be used where Zaa’tar is called for. Zaa’tar has antioxidant properties and is said to keep the mind alert. In Lebanon, children are encouraged to eat Manaa’eesh (breakfast pizza spread with za’atar) before exams to increase their concentration and performance.
Zaa’tar is traditionally enjoyed at breakfast with a variety of cheese or spread onto flat bread. Zaa’tar can also be added to vegetables, meats, dips and so on.