Recipe: Fresh Figs with Za’atar and Fresh Cheese

This dish is super simple to make and absolutely delicious. It’s great as a starter even as a main dish if you prefer a lighter, vegetarian meal. This recipe is adapted from ‘The New Mediterranean Table’ by the brilliant Sameh Wadi. 

Recipe makes 6 servings.


1/4 cup of chervil leaves or flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup of wild baby arugula leaves
1/4 cup watercress leaves
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice
Sea salt
12 medium ripe figs, at room temperature
1/4 cup of fresh cheese (Fior di latte is good)
Za’atar, for garnish (purchase or make it yourself with the simple recipe below)
Aged balsamic vinegar (use the best stuff you can find)
Himalayan pink salt


3 tbsp white sesame seeds
2 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp dried hyssop or wild thyme
1 tbsp dried marjoram
3 tbsp ground sumac
1 tsp sea salt

To make the za’atar, toast the sesame seeds in a small frying pan over moderate heat, stirring continually so they toast evenly, for 2 to 3 minutes, until they start to brown. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Grind the oregano, hyssop and marjoram to a fine powder in a spice grinder and combine with the sesame seeds, sumac and salt in a small bowl. Store in an airtight jar for up to 1 month.

Then for the salad, in a medium bowl, toss the herbs and greens with the olive oil and lemon juice with salt. Arrange the salad on a platter. Cut the figs in half and place them on top of the greens. Dot fresh cheese around the figs. Garnish with the za’atar, a drizzle of balsamic, some olive oil and a sprinkling of Himalayan pink salt.