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Za’atar Roasted Carrots and Chickpeas

za'atar roasted carrots and chickpeas

Enter stage left for it’s grand debut; za’atar roasted carrots and chickpeas. There are those occasions when I get stuck on a new flavor. Sumac is one of them, but there is also something new (new to my kitchen) that I have been wanted to experiment with. Za’atar. I’ve been waiting for fall to roll around so that I can try on all those winter indulgences, like roasted potatoes, warm wintery salads and of course the endless variety of oven-roasted vegetables.

za'atar roasted carrots and chickpeas

What is za’atar?

If you are not familiar with it, za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice that is recognized for it’s distinct flavor that adds depth to any dish. It’s a combination of sumac, thyme, marjoram, oregano, roasted sesame seeds, and sea salt. Consider it the Middle Eastern version of Italian seasoning mix; something we likely all have in our spice cabinet. Well, za’atar too, is practically limitless to how it can be used. And of course of love it. How can I not? It contains sumac, one of my favorite spices.

Where to find the spice blend?

You can buy it in Turkish / Middle Eastern markets or online with trusty Amazon. But you can also try mixing your own!

4 tablespoons sumac
2 tablespoons thyme
2 tablespoons marjoram
2 tablespoons oregano
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1 tablespoon roasted sesame seeds

A basic za’atar roasted carrots recipe that can be easily adapted

This is a simple recipe that can easily be adapted to suit your own personal taste. Instead of roasted heirloom carrots, cauliflower would a fantastic alternative that also pairs well with chickpeas, as do sweet potatoes and butternut squash. Mint can be replaced with fresh flat-leaf parsley, or a combination of both can be used. Plus this side dish can easily please vegans by skipping the feta cheese.

heirloom carrots

za'atar roasted carrots and chickpeas

Za'atar Roasted Carrots and Chickpeas
 
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A simple and easily adaptable recipe for za’atar roasted carrots and chickpeas. Easy to make, a really great addition to any meal whether served as a side dish, or with salad or couscous as a main.
Author:
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 4, as a side

INGREDIENTS:
To roast:
1 x 400 g can organic chickpeas
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons za’atar (a spice blend available at Middle Eastern markets)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 bunch carrots, larger ones cut in half lengthwise (about 8 carrots)
sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

To assemble:
juice of 1 lemon
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
handful fresh mint leaves, chopped
100 g feta cheese

METHOD:
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F / 220°C and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a large bowl toss the chickpeas with olive oil, za’atar and cumin. Add the carrots and toss again.

3. Spread the chickpeas and carrots onto the baking sheet in an even layer. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Roast in the oven until carrots are tender, about 25 minutes.

5. Whisk the olive oil and lemon together in small bowl.

6. Transfer the carrots and chickpeas onto a serving platter drizzle with dressing, sprinkle with sesame seeds and top with feta and mint. Enjoy!

TIP: I try to choose bunches of carrots on the smaller side so I can either roast them whole or slice them lengthwise. Larger carrots work fine, just slice them crosswise as well. Or feel free to quarter all the carrots, regardless of size.

This recipe for za’atar roasted carrots and chickpeas is the perfect addition to salads or served with couscous (or my personal favorite millet).

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