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Zaatar flounder with tahini and pine nuts



1 ½ pound flounder filets (I usually do fish by weight- I assume 6 ounces a person)

Juice of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon zaatar spice

2 cloves garlic, minced (or 2 frozen cubes, softened)

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4 tablespoon tahini (see recipe below, or use store bought)

¼ cup pine nuts



Take the flounder and cut into 5 inch (about) portions. Sometimes the flounder filets can be huge so I like to cut them down into individual portions before I use them.  A note about buying flounder: I usually ask the fish monger (I like saying the word “monger”) to remove the bones from the flounder. The pieces end up looking a little narrower and not as “pretty”, but the flounder bones are really fine and I feel more comfortable feeding my family with the bones removed.

Place the flounder into a large pyrex baking dish. Drizzle lemon juice over the fish. Sprinkle the zaatar, garlic, salt and pepper over the fish and finish off by drizzling with the olive oil. Cook the fish for 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

When the fish is ready place the filets on a platter and drizzle with the tahini. To finish, sprinkle the pine nuts* on top of the cooked fish and serve.


*Pine nuts- if you feel very ambitious you can toast the pine nuts for added flavor. Toast them by placing the nuts on a sheet pan and cooking for 5 min (watch carefully!) until they are lightly brown.


Homemade Tahini



3 tablespoons sesame paste (I prefer the ones in the plastic containers. The ones in the jars are too hard and oily)

Juice of 1 lemon

3 tablespoons of water

1 teaspoon salt

1 clove smashed garlic, or finely chopped



Mix the sesame paste with the lemon juice in a small bowl. With a small whisk or fork, mix well until the paste thickens a lot. Then add the water, salt and garlic. Continue to mix till it is a smooth sauce that will coat the back of the spoon. If the tahini is still too thick, slowly add more water onr Tablespoon at a time until till you reach the desired consistency. Keep refrigerated for up to one week.

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