Avocado fattoush with za’atar crisps

Avocado fattoush with za’atar crisps

Leiths How to Cook
Peter Cassidy


Quantity Ingredient
1 lemon
120ml olive oil
small bunch mint
small bunch flat-leaf parsley
1 little gem lettuce
4 spring onions
1 small cucumber
4 tomatoes
1 large, ripe avocado
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the za’atar crisps

Quantity Ingredient
2 pitta breads
za’atar, to sprinkle
olive oil, for brushing


  1. Heat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Finely grate the zest from half of the lemon; halve the lemon and squeeze the juice from both halves. Put the lemon zest and juice in a bowl with some salt and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil. Roughly chop half the mint and parsley leaves and add them to the dressing. Chiffonade the remaining herbs and the lettuce leaves and set aside.
  3. Slice the spring onions on the diagonal, including plenty of the green part. Peel, halve, deseed and dice the cucumber. Dice the tomatoes. Add the spring onions, cucumber and tomatoes to the dressing.
  4. For the za’atar crisps, lightly toast the pitta breads in a toaster or under the grill, until puffing up but not too brown. Cut all around the edge and split them open. Lay the flat pieces on a baking sheet and brush with olive oil. Sprinkle with a little za’atar and bake for 5 minutes, or until crisp and brown. Break or cut into pieces.
  5. When ready to serve, halve the avocado and remove the stone, then peel each half and cut the flesh into chunks. Add to the salad with the lettuce and remaining herbs and toss through, then adjust the seasoning.
  6. Pile the fattoush onto individual serving plates and top with the za’atar crisps. This is also delicious served with plain grilled chicken or fish, brushed with oil and sprinkled with za’atar or sumac before cooking.

A note on za’atar...

  • This Middle Eastern condiment is a mixture of sesame seeds, dried herbs and ground sumac (a lemony flavoured spice). To make your own, lightly toast 2 tablespoon sesame seeds in a dry frying pan over a low to medium heat. Tip onto a plate and set aside to cool. Put the cooled sesame seeds in a small food processor bowl with 50 g sumac, 2 tablespoons dried thyme, 1 tablespoon dried oregano, ½ tablespoon dried marjoram and 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt and pulse until ground to a coarse consistency. Za’atar is delicious as a dip for crudités or stirred through yoghurt to make a sauce for grilled meats. Makes 150–200 g.
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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