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Artichokes stuffed with cumin and za’atar scented rice. A poem.

March 24, 2014

artichokes_rice 2

Well, I would say that these artichokes could be a poem.

A sweet and sour one, spicy, optimistic and full of emotions.

It’s simple yet complicated in its texture and taste, a sense of spring and middle east runs through you in every bite.

Cumin and za’atar are its thing.

Don’t think about it.

Just eat it.

artichokes_rice 3

artichokes_rice Collage

And here’s the recipe.

artichokes_rice 1

This recipe is stuck in one of my scrapbooks for so long. The clip is so old that it’s already yellow, the magazine I took it from doesn’t even exist now and unfortunately hadn’t noted down its title…


  • 10 fresh artichokes (you may see directions here for getting rid of the leaves). Or 10 frozen ones.
  • 1 1/2 cup of rice. Normally Carolina would be fine but I tried with brown rice which I had handy and it was delicious. So, I guess you can try with any kind of rice you like.
  • 4-5 fresh green onions, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2-3 tbsp dill, finely chopped (you can add 2 more tbsp of fennel if you like)
  • 1 cup tomato pulp (or a big fresh tomato grounded)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp za’atar
  • olive oil
  • salt, pepper


  1. Mix well in a bowl all the ingredients -except for artichokes and olive oil: rice, green onions, garlic, dill (+fennel), tomato, cumin, za’atar, salt and pepper.
  2. Fill the artichokes with the rice mixture. Put them carefully in a pot so as to stand upright.
  3. If there is any rice left, spread it through the artichokes. Sprinkle with lots of olive oil all over and carefully add water until you half cover the artichokes.
  4. Put the lid on and let them boil on low fire until the rice is done and the artichokes are soft. Add some more water if needed in the meantime.
3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 25, 2014 10:47 am

    These look delicious! Would love to make them 🙂

    I’d never heard of za’atar though – after looking it up it seems there are a few things that go by that name…an individual herb, a spice mix with sesame, etc… what is it you used here?

    • March 25, 2014 9:12 pm

      Hi Natalie!
      You’re right, you can find za’atar in many forms especially in the middle east. The one I used, is a spice mix which includes sesame, thyme, sumac and salt. Thanks for your comment! 🙂

      • March 25, 2014 9:16 pm

        Excellent, thanks for the reply. I’ll be on the lookout for some next time I’m in the right kind of shop!

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