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Sumac Spice

Denise Landis

Denise Landis

Denise Landis is the founder and publisher of The Cook's Cook. She has been a food editor and recipe tester for over 25 years.

Sumac Photo credit: The Spice House

Sumac, a reddish-brown spice ground from the fruit of sumac shrubs, is used as a seasoning and condiment in Middle Eastern cuisine. It has a mildly tart, almost lemony, flavor that complements chicken, fish, lamb, and creamy vegetable or yogurt dishes.

Salt-free, but with a piquancy that spikes the flavor of whatever it’s put on, it’s an excellent table condiment for someone on a low-salt diet.

Try it on grilled kebabs, hummus, or sprinkled over cucumber-yogurt salad. Use Sumac Spice Rub on roasted chicken or Syrian Za’atar to season meats, salads, or even pizza. Grill or broil eggplant until blackened, cool, peel off the skin, then dress with tahini thinned with olive oil and lemon juice and a dusting of sumac.