The 4th of July is the quintessential American summer holiday. Beaches, beer, burgers and…fireworks. It just screams ‘Merica! My friends and I make a yearly trek to Michigan where we partake in four days of festivities and water sports. We all don our finest red, white and blue, and just relax and unplug. Isn’t that what summer is all about?
Some 4th of July purists that say the holiday just isn’t the same without a classic grilled burger. I tend to agree, except for the classic part. One reason the good ole U.S.A. is so great is that we are one big melting pot of nationalities and cultures. So when it came time to make a truly great burger, I turned to Middle Eastern influences. Instead of boring salt and pepper, I made the spice blend za’atar my the seasoning of choice.
You can find za’atar in spice shops or Middle Eastern specialty stores, but it is worth the effort to make your own.
Sumac, which adds a citrus flavor to the herby seasoning, can be found at Whole Foods or spice shops. I’ve used za’atar in everything from dips to eggs to roasted vegetables to on chicken, but this burger may be the best use yet!