Crispy Za'atar Fries with a Garlic Scallion Dipping Sauce

A lot of you may be wondering if I've had this baby yet, and I have not. My due date is today. I thought he was going to arrive early, but I guess he is going to show up fashionably late - like his dad. I'm not sure why I was under the impression that he was going to come early, or that my labor is going to be quick and painless and last at most 5 hours. I think every new mom tells herself that her baby is going to come early, but in actual fact, most babies usually come late. I had a doctors appointment last Friday and I was 90% effaced and 1.5 cm dilated. She performed a bizarre technique called a cervical sweeping, hoping that it would put me into labor, but unfortunately, it did not. Since then, every ache and pain, twinge and twerk, feel like labor is about to begin but then again, I am pretty inexperienced at this whole thing, so clearly I don't know what I'm talking about.

I packed my hospital bag last week, which was really weird. I was trying to pack as if I was going on a luxurious spa weekend, but let's be real. All I'm going to need is a whole lot of strength. People seemed really anxious about me getting this bag packed. Everyone kept asking - have you packed your bag? Don't forget to bring this, this, and this? I live a 5-minute drive from the hospital, which is probably why I am not that concerned. The babies car seat is installed, the bottle of champagne is ready to be packed in the cooler on ice, and Brent knows that while I'm in labor, positive words are encouraged, but gentle caressing is way out of the picture. I need him to be supportive from at least an arms reach away.

I went into nesting mode last week, where I cleaned the whole house top to bottom. I no longer care about clean floors or freezer meals, and just want this baby out. We still haven't come up with a middle name, which is something we should probably get on. But, I do have an adorable outfit picked out that I am going to bring him home from the hospital in.

In the meantime, while I wait for this baby, the only productive option to kill time - that doesn't involve a lot of heavy lifting or bending, is cooking. Yesterday I made these za'atar fries because right now, all I want to eat is potatoes. Za'atar is an amazing blend of Middle Eastern spices. I have a large tub in the cupboard, and some would say that I am completely obsessed. I made a creamy yogurt dipping sauce with garlic, scallions, za'atar, and salt, to accompany these potatoes. My original plan was to make a labneh spread, but I couldn't find any in the store. I found a tub of whole milk Mediterranean style yogurt in the cooler and decided that that would be a very suitable alternative. The combination of flavors in this meal is incredible, salty, tangy, and lemony. I could eat this meal all day every day. Until I get sick of potatoes, that is.



serves 2

prep time: 10 minutes

cooking time: 40 minutes

1 lb baby potatoes, quartered

1 cup pearl onions (optional)

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp za'atar

1 1/2 tsp salt

dipping sauce:

1/2 cup Greek or Mediterranean plain yogurt

1 clove garlic, pureed

1/2 tsp za'atar

1/4 tsp salt

1 green onion, sliced

1 tsp olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400ºF.

Place the potatoes and onions onto a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with za'atar and salt. Toss. Place into the oven and bake for 40 minutes, flipping the potatoes halfway.

In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, garlic, za'atar, salt, and onions. Drizzle with olive oil.

Once cooked, remove the potatoes from the oven and serve warm with the dipping sauce.