Za’atar Fried Fish with Cabbage Slaw

Za’atar is a blend of dried herbs— typically oregano, thyme, sumac, marjoram, sesame— that features centrally in Lebanese cuisine. We took Edy’s tip to heart to embrace this savory, aromatic seasoning in our cooking by using it in our Za’atar Fried Fish with Cabbage Slaw. 


We use it a few different ways throughout the recipe, to demonstrate how truly versatile this spice mixture is. 

5 minsPrep Time
25 minsCook Time

30 minsTotal Time


Za’atar Fried Fish

  • 1 Lb Cod or Similar Flakey White Fish Like Hake or Halibut
  • 1 Tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tsp Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 Tsp Za'atar


  • 1 1/2 Cups (Plus Four Tablespoons) All Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 Cup Rice Flour
  • 2 Cups Cold Club Soda or Lager
  • 1/2 Cup Cold Vodka
  • 1 1/2 Tsp Kosher Salt Plus more to finish
  • 1 Tsp Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Baking Powder
  • Neutral Oil (Vegetable or Canola) For frying
  • Za'atar


  • 10 Oz Finely Shredded Red Cabbage
  • 1/2 Tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tsp Za'atar
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Finely Chopped Dill

To serve

  • 1 Lemon Cut into wedges
  • Za'atar
  • Flakey Sea Salt
  • Fresh Dill Sprigs For garnish
  • Mayonnaise



Pat the fish dry and cut into equal 4 ounce filets. Season both sides of the fish with salt, pepper, sugar and za'atar and refrigerate until ready to use. 


Place the oil in dutch oven, filling it halfway through. (For safety, make sure there is at least 2” of clearance to the mouth of the pot.) Turn on the heat to medium/ medium-high and bring the temperature of the oil up to 350-375 degrees. 


While the oil heats up, make the slaw.  In your serving bowl, combine red cabbage and the salt. Massage the cabbage and toss with your hands, until the cabbage is wilted and slick. In a small bowl, mix the olive oil and zaatar.  Drizzle over the cabbage. Add the chopped dill, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and toss all the ingredients together until mixed through. Place the slaw in the refrigerator until ready to eat. 


Prepare a sheet pan with a wire rack on top. Remove the fish from the refrigerator and pat dry. Dredge the pieces of fish in the 4 tablespoons of all purpose flour. And lay on the wire rack. 


When the oil is just about at temperature, make the batter. (For maximum crispiness, you want to keep the ingredients in the batter as cold as possible, and make the batter right before using.) In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients, except for the za’atar. Add the vodka and the club soda (or lager.) Mix until ingredients are just combined - lumps and few dry pockets of flour are OK- this will create great texture in the final product. Add a few more splashes of club soda if too dry. Do NOT overmix. 


Working in batches, dip the dredged filet in the batter and allow the excess to drip off before carefully transferring the battered fish into the hot oil. Do not overcrowd the pot. Using a spoon, drizzle about a tablespoon of batter on the fish to create an additional craggly, delicious texture. Allow to fry one one side, undisturbed until golden, about 3-4 minutes. Gently flip over, and continue to fry the second side until golden and cooked through, another 3-4 minutes more. Using a spider, carefully skim out the finished filet. Tilt the spider slightly over the pot to allow the excess oil to drip off, before fully removing the filet to the wire rack. Immediately season with a pinch of kosher salt and a pinch of za’atar. Repeat with the remaining filets. 


Serve the za’atar fried fish with the za’atar cabbage slaw, lemon wedges and mayonnaise sprinkled with additional za’atar.