You are currently viewing Cooking Together Middle Eastern Recipes – Zaatar Salmon; Saffron Chicken;

Cooking Together Middle Eastern Recipes – Zaatar Salmon; Saffron Chicken;

Our cooking together cookery classes are as much about learning to cook as they are a sociable experience. We hope you enjoyed your evening and are ready to recreate the meals at home. The recipes work really well as delicious dinners and make a great combination for dinner party ideas. 

You Cooked:

Starter: Crispy Zaatar Salmon with Lemon and Tahini Sauce and Batata Hara;

Main: Saffron Chicken with Khobz Flatbread, Moroccan Roasted Cherry Tomato Sauce, Hummus, Tomato & Pomegranate Salsa;

Dessert: Lemon Posset

Crispy Zaatar Salmon with Lemon and Tahini

Ingredients – Serves 4:

  • – 4x salmon fillet, skin on
  • – 2 tbsp of zaatar
  • – 1 tsp of sumac
  • – 60 ml of olive oil
  • – 250g baby spinach
  • – 90g tahini
  • – 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • – 1 lemon, juice and zest
  • – 2tbsp of chopped coriander
  • – Seasoning

Herbal flavour of zaatar and tangy sumac work wonders with creamy tahini and lemon.


  1. Preheat the oven to 200C.
  3. Dry the salmon fillets with a kitchen towel or blue j-cloth.
  5. Combine sumac and zaatar and sprinkle it all over the meat side of salmon, creating a crust.
  7. Heat a non-stick frying pan on medium heat, add tbsp of oil.
  9. Once hot, add spinach, sauté with salt and pepper until wilted.
  11. Top it with salmon, skin side down, bake for 5 minutes.
  13. Meanwhile, mix together tahini, garlic, lemon zest and juice, seasoning and 100ml of water.
  15. Pour the mix around the salmon, not directly on it.
  16. Bake together until the fish is cooked and tahini bubbling.
  18. Finish with coriander and extra sumac.

Batata Hara

Ingredients – Serves 2:

  • – 6 medium-sized gold potatoes, peeled
  • – 3 tbsp olive oil
  • – 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • – 2 tsp coriander seeds or a little more than 1 tsp ground coriander
  • – 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, more for later
  • – 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • – 1 lime, juice of
  • – 1 cup chopped fresh coriander leaves
  • – 1 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • – 1 cup chopped fresh dill
  • – Salt and pepper


  1. Peel the potatoes and place them in a large pot with enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil and let them cook in the boiling water for 10 minutes or so. The potatoes should be cooked through but still firm.
  3. Drain the potatoes and let them cool briefly. Cut the potatoes in smaller bite-size cubes or pieces.
  5. Heat the olive oil in a cast-iron skillet on medium. Stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes and coriander seeds. Cook for 2-3 minutes then add the turmeric and the lime juice.
  7. Toss in the potatoes and mix well to coat. Add ½ of the fresh cilantro, parsley, and fresh dill. Cook for 4 more minutes. Add salt and black pepper to your taste.
  9. Remove from heat and top with more red pepper flakes and the remaining fresh herbs. You can serve this potato salad warm or at room temperature.

Saffron Chicken

Ingredients – Serves 2:

  • – Powdered saffron – you need very little
  • – Juice of 2 lemons
  • – Plain yoghurt, we used the remainder of the pot from the dip.
  • – Salt & Pepper
  • – Chicken, either 2 boneless thighs each or a thigh and a leg on the bone.


  1. Mix the yoghurt, saffron powder and lemon juice with some seasoning.  Taste and adjust accordingly.  Smear all over the chicken.  Set to one side for a while or even cover and fridge over night.
  3. Using the same griddle pan, heat to high and make sure you get plenty of colour and lines into your chicken.  You can then pop the whole pan into the oven for about 30minutes at 160C.   We are  doing at 160C as the rice cooks at this temperature – if you were only cooking the chicken, adjust to 180C and it would take slightly less time – always check juices are clear before serving chicken.

Khobz Flatbread

Ingredients – Makes 10:

  • – 350ml of warm water (might need a little bit more, depending on strength of your flour)
  • – 1tsp of fast action dried yeast
  • – 2tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
  • – 600g strong white bread flour (plus extra for dusting)
  • – 1tbsp of caster sugar
  • – 1tsp of fine salt


  1. Pour the water into a mixing bowl, stir in the yeast until dissolved.
  3. Add the oil, flour, sugar and salt, mix everything and form a quite firm dough, adding more water if too dry, more flour if too wet.
  5. Leave for 10 minutes covered before kneading it until smooth.
  7. Transfer into a floured bowl, cover and leave to proof for 60 minutes.
  9. Divide the dough into 10 equal pieces and shape into balls.
  11. Cover the balls and rest for 10 minutes.
  13. Flour the surface and roll them about 1 cm thick.
  15. Cover the rolled flatbread and rest for another 10 minutes.
  17. Meanwhile, place a non-stick frying pan on medium to high heat and get it smoking hot.
  19. Place one or two flatbread at time into your pan and cook on each side for roughly 2 minutes.
  21. Good indicator, when to flip, is if start seeing bubbles on top.
  23. Get a clean tea towel and stack your flatbreads in it and wrap tightly.
  25. Rest in the towel for 5 minutes, this will soften the flatbreads.

Moroccan Roasted Cherry Tomato Sauce


  • – 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • – 1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
  • – 1 clove garlic, finely chopped 1 tsp
  • – 1 red chilli, chopped
  • – 1/2 teaspoon harissa paste
  • – 1/2 tablespoon tomato paste plus a pinch of sugar
  • – 2 cups cherry tomatoes (1 pint) (about 3/4 lb)
  • – 1/4 cup water or more as needed
  • – 2 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander
  • – 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • – 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • – 1/2 teaspoon paprika or smoked paprika I use half and half


  1. Heat oil in medium pan. Sauté onions for 4-6 minutes until tender and lightly browned. Add garlic, spices, tomato paste (with a pinch of sugar) and harissa. Stir and cook for 1 minute.
  3. Add cherry tomatoes, chilli and water. Bring to boil. Then lower heat to simmer, stirring occasionally. The total time will be about 10 minutes,after 5 minutes, help burst tomatoes by gently pressing with spatula or large spoon to burst them (careful not to squirt yourself).
  5. Stir in coriander. Continue cooking until tomatoes form a sauce the consistency you like. More cooking will make it thicker. Add more water to thin it out if needed. Taste and adjust seasonings e.g., more salt, sugar, harissa.


Ingredients – Makes 1 cup:

  • – 1 can chickpeas 
  • – 1/4 cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice, 1 large lemon 
  • – 1/4 cup (60 ml) well-stirred tahini
  • – 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • – 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • – 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • – Salt to taste
  • – 2 to 3 tablespoons (30 to 45 ml) water
  • – Dash ground paprika or sumac


  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the tahini and lemon juice and process for 1 minute, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl then process for 30 seconds more. This extra time helps “whip” or “cream” the tahini, making the hummus smooth and creamy.
  3. Add the olive oil, minced garlic, cumin, and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the whipped tahini and lemon juice.
  5. Process for 30 seconds, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl then process another 30 seconds or until well blended.
  7. Open, drain, and rinse the chickpeas.
  9. Add half of the chickpeas to the food processor and process for 1 minute. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl, then add remaining chickpeas and process until thick and quite smooth; 1 to 2 minutes.
  11. Most likely the hummus will be too thick or still have tiny bits of chickpea. To fix this, with the food processor turned on, slowly add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water until you reach the perfect consistency.
  13. Taste for salt and adjust as needed.
  15. Serve hummus with a drizzle of olive oil and dash of paprika.
  17. Store homemade hummus in an airtight container and refrigerate up to one week.

Tomato & Pomegranate Salsa

Ingredients – Serves 2:

  • – 200g cherry tomatoes, de-seeded and diced
  • – 1 small red onion, diced
  • – 1tbsp extra virgin oil
  • – 2tbsp white wine vinegar
  • – 1tbsp of molasses
  • – 1 lime zest and juice
  • – ½ cucumber, de-seeded and diced
  • – Handful of pomegranate seeds
  • – Salt and pepper
  • – 2tbsp of fresh dill
  • – 2tbsp of fresh parsley
  • – 2tbsp of fresh coriander


  1. Add all the ingredients into a mixing bowl, toss and let marinade for at least 20 minutes.

Lemon Posset

Ingredients – Serves 3-4:

  • – 300ml of double cream
  • – 60g caster sugar
  • – 1 juicy lemon


  1. Squeeze the lemon.
  3. Bring the cream and sugar to the boil (careful it should just boil but not boil over). Once you see it boil – stay there and boil for exactly 3 minutes.
  5. Take the pan off the heat and whisk in the lemon juice.
  7. Strain this into a jug and leave to cool for 20minutes.
  9. If you wish to put a crumbled biscuit in the bottom of the receptacle – this is the time to do it. If not gently pour the cream into the glasses.
  11. Refrigerate for 6 hours minimum.
  13. Serve with fruit and edible flowers

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