Today is International Za’atar Day!
In honour of one of my favourite ingredients, I’m sharing a fun way to make use of this magical aromatic mix of herbs.
Za’atar Matcha Pastry Bites!
A light snack with lots of flavours, made of only a few ingredients.
What is Za’atar?
Although it varies across the middle east, Za’atar is typically made of a combination of herbs with toasted sesame seems. Creating a super aromatic seasoning.
That’s usually thyme, oregano, sumac, marjoram; and some other secret ingredients that’s specific to each individual family.
But it’s not mainly used as a seasoning.
While you can drench your meats and vegetables in a Za’atar marinade for an incredible flavour, I grew up eating it simply with olive oil. Dunking a freshly baked pita bread right into the oil, then into the Za’atar. Or wrapped in pita bread with vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, and olives, with a couple of mint leaves.
That was my usual weekday breakfast. And I loved it!
There are tons of ways to make use of Za’atar. From Manaeesh to herby potatoes, sprinkled over salads, and even baking! So let’s talk about these Za’atar Pastry Bites.
It adds a subtle soothing flavour to the pastry, but doesn’t take away from any Za’atar presence!
It’s also packed with nutritious goodness. Like antioxidants. And it’s a great energy booster. Why not add some of that in here, am I right?!
I used Suncore Foods Natural Matcha Green Tea Food Colouring Powder . A great way to use matcha in baking. Making these Za’atar bites a fun flavourful snack to have at parties, or with an afternoon tea!
How to Make & Store
Making the Pastry Bites
The recipe consists of a lot of steps, but it’s pretty simple to follow.
First make the dough in a stand mixer, or a large mixing bowl (by hand). Or if you have a food processor with a dough blade, that will work too! I used my CuisinArt to make the dough for this one.
After splitting the dough into two, add the Matcha Food Colouring Powder to combine into one of them. Let them rise in separate bowls for an hour. Then split each dough into two, making 4 equal parts. Letting them rise/rest as well.
Then comes the fun part. Rolling each into rectangles, brushing with Za’atar mix, layering, and rolling it up to cut into bites to bake.
Storing the Pastry Bites
Once cooled down completely, store in an air-tight container. Keep in a cool dry area – closed pantry/cupboard. They should be good for up to a week. If they last that long! 😉
Zaatar Matcha Pastries Recipe
If you have any questions about this recipe, or gave it a try, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below. Remember to rate the recipe with ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️. This will help us sustain Plant Based Arab.
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Zaatar Matcha Pastry BitesCourse: Baking, PastryCuisine: Middle Eastern, Middle East
A light snack with lots of flavours, made of only a few ingredients. It’s a soothing treat with subtle matcha flavours. Flaky and crunchy on the outside, with softer insides to pair well with an afternoon tea break. They’re dairy-free and vegan. Let’s bake some Za’atar Matcha Pastry Bites!
– Two bundt cake pans
or one large sheet pan, 18 x 12
– Food Processor with dough blade attachment, CuisinArt
- Dough Ingredients
240 g all purpose flour, sifted and measured
3 tbsp condensed coconut milk
120 litre plant milk of choice – I used oat milk
1 tsp active dry yeast
3 tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp + 2 tsp vegan butter, room temperature
Matcha Food Colouring Powder – Suncore Foods
- Za’atar Mix
4 tbsp Za’atar
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- The Rest
More Za’atar for finishing
- Making the Dough
- Combine the dough ingredients (except butter and matcha) in a stand mixer/large mixing bowl – low speed – for 5 minutes.
- Slowly add in the butter, in small cubes, and knead to combine again. Scrape down the sides as needed. Continue kneading for 5 minutes until smooth.
- Remove half of the dough. Cover in a bowl. Then add the matcha superfood powder to the mixing bowl. Knead for about 2-3 minutes.
- Preparing the Dough
- Roll each of the two dough into a ball. Cover each in a separate bowl to rise for an hour.
- Cut each ball in half, creating 2 matcha and 2 regular equal parts (weigh for better measurement).
- Roll each of the 4 parts into smaller dough balls. Cover in separate bowls to rest for 15 minutes.
- Prepare the Za’atar mix in a small bowl while you wait.
- Rolling the Pastry Bites
- One at a time, remove the dough balls and roll into a thin rectangle. About the size of a small baking sheet (13 x 9). Cover each when rolling the next one.
- Lay one of the regular rectangular dough on a clean surface. Gently brush with half of the Za’atar mix. Spread out evenly, close to the edges – leaving a small space.
- Lay one of the matcha rectangular dough on top of the Za’atar covered dough. Carefully pin down on the corners to help with the process.
- Along the longer side of the rectangle, gently roll all the way to the end. Cut into 8 equal parts, starting from the middle.
Cover to rest for 30 minutes.
- Repeat steps 1 to 4 for the other 2 rectangular dough.
- Baking the Pastry Bites
- Preheat the oven to 350 F / 175 C.
- In two bundt pans or 1 sheet pan, spray some oil (or brush with olive oil), and cover with a generous sprinkle of Za’atar.
- Add in the pastry bites. Careful flip each to cover in more Za’atar. Then sprinkle with more Za’atar on top.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutess. Until they’re golden with a crust, and a softer inside.
- Cooling & Serving
- Let it cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
- Enjoy immediately after. Or let cool down completely before storing in an air tight container.
- Store in pantry/cool dry place for up to a week.