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Roast chicken seasoned with citrus zest and za'atar beats out the garlic, lemon and herb rendition every time.

Sabrina Ghaynor, known as the “the golden girl of Persian cookery,” has a new collection of recipes out for the Middle Eastern food enthusiast in us all. Part Old World, part modern cuisine, Sirocco is a beautiful representation of one of the world’s most vibrant food cultures. 

Roast chicken is the ultimate comfort food, and I have been known to conjure up many different versions over the years. While I love a classic salt- and pepper-seasoned bird, I’m pretty adventurous and unafraid of throwing the contents of my spice racks and pantry at a chicken to liven it up when the mood suits. Za’atar is a staple spice blend in my house — it’s so versatile, it goes with everything, and the fragrance of citrus zest really lifts this flavorsome dish. Try it: It’s a winner. And don’t waste the leftover fruits — juice them and add water and sugar to sweeten for a refreshing drink.

Reprinted with permission from Sirocco