Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Middle Eastern Potato Snack Platter


I'm impatient for spring to arrive. It always happens to me around this time of year. I feel like I've endured two months of freezing cold and snow and now I want cherry blossoms and warmth. Soon, I know, but not quite yet. So, while it's still cold and bleak, I'm catching up on my streaming movie watching and that requires snacks.

In the interest of keeping the snacking on the healthy side and, because I'm usually happy eating a bunch of appetizers instead of a full meal, I made myself a Middle Eastern snack platter.

You all know I write the Middle Eastern food column for About. com (you know that, right? OK, here the link if you don't.) so those are some of my favorite flavor combinations. But instead of dipping bread into the hummus and tahini, I'm dipping roasted potatoes instead.

I actually like serving crispy potatoes as appetizers with dip. They're easy, delicious and unexpected but always well received. (My recipe for herb roasted potatoes with a sour cream dip is a big hit with guests.) So this time I roasted the potatoes with za'atar (my spice obsession) and assembled a platter with sauces and vegetables. I love variety when I'm snacking and this one is fun to share, too. Enjoy!

Middle Eastern Potato Snack Platter

by Hungry Couple
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 40 Minutes
Ingredients (2 Servings)
  • 2 Idaho baking potatoes
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 Teaspoon za'atar seasoning
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 Cup hummus
  • 1 Cup baby spinach leaves, washed
  • 2 Carrots, peeled and julienned
  • 1/2 Seedless (English) cucumber, sliced
  • 1/4 Cup crumbled feta cheese
  • Rounds of pita bread
  • Cilantro tahini sauce (recipe follows)
Cilantro Tahini Sauce:
  • 1/4 Cup sesame paste
  • 1/4 Cup water
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 Clove garlic, grated or very finely minced
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Wash the potatoes but leave the skin on if you like. Cut each potato in half and then cut each half into quarters. Toss with the olive oil and za'atar. Place on a baking pan lined with parchment paper and bake for 30 - 40 minutes or until the potatoes are golden brown. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle on the feta cheese.

To make the tahini sauce, whisk together the sesame paste, water, lemon juice, garlic and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Assemble the platter with the roasted potatoes, hummus, spinach leaves, carrots, cucumbers, tahini sauce, pita bread and a dish of additional za'atar for people to help themselves to more seasoning.

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This recipe is sponsored by the Idaho Potato Commission. For more information and recipes, please visit their website. Thank you for supporting the products I love and use in my kitchen.

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