Am nuts about zataar?
That’s what you might think if you have been following my posts for the past month. Of course I am excited to try new recipes and create them on my own as I have a large stock of zataar in my pantry. So when I heard of the carnival at British school in Colombo I was even more excited and reserved a table for myself to put up a game. My idea was to share the food made with zataar to the public and get their opinion while introducing the Arabian spice to the Sri lankan public. At the British school in Colombo Christmas fair there was a multi cultural society as most of the expats in Colombo sent their kids to the British school in Colombo. It’s a posh school and many students I cane across were from China, Japan, Australia, United Kingdom, Pakistan, Africa and many more countries.
I was so glad to hear their comments.
I wanted to have a guess the ingredient game and set up my table with a bowl of zataar and cheddar pizza and a lot of gifts.
There was a small kid who asked what’s on my table and I explained that it’s a game which they gave
My first customer was a Japanese from high school and when I asked her if she liked to try some zataar she was so curious to know more and inquired what it is and I started my introduction. All she said after my introduction was ok let me try some out.
My second customer was a Pakistani lady with a baby in a carrier. She was with a lankan lady and as I asked her if she liked to try some arabic pizza she asked me, what’s that? Whats inside it? I explained all over again to her the ingredients in zataar and when I mentioned cheddar was added to the topping she raised her eyebrows and was excited to try I guess she is a cheese lover. She tried it in front of me and told “mmm, its delicious 🙂 with a wide grin of satisfaction.
The next were three little elves.
Wondering if Sri Lanka has elves?
Well, please stop. I am talking about three little 5th graders I guess. They were half my size and yea they were on a budget. Parents do give money for them to spend on what they want at school fair and these kids were great at taking care of what they bought. I sold my arabic pizza to them and sighted another three pairs of satisfied eyes with a slight grin.
Another three musketeers were my next customers.
I told them about my pizza and they asked to have a look finally they bought it and they too tried it in front of me while buying some stuff from the table opposite mine. They were 8th or 9th graders who were free of responsibility and enjoying their teens. Teens are basically those who like to try new things and introducing zataar to them was fantastic. They gave a very cheerful expression with a bid grin and one gave a thumbs up.
Next was a 5.8 tall and slim lady with short hair who looked like a Korean but am not good at guessing the nationality by their looks. As I introduced my pizza she asked me the origin of the spice and I mentioned I got introduced to it from Dubai. Soon as I mentioned Dubai she started going back into a very formal conversation and was telling how hot is Dubai. I then realized how people think middle east means a very hot country that’s how I thought of middle East before I moved into Dubai. Only after I lived there until winter I was happy to experience the winter season. As a person who dreamt of living in a country like london which I imagine as always cold and beautiful. Now I prefer Dubai though I cannot stand the heat in summer and the cold winter but Dubai has given me a whole new experience.
Getting back to my customer number 8 she asked me if the zataar was spicy as she is a Japanese and don’t like eating spicy food.
So next was my 9th customer who was short and fat, looked a bit sad. As soon as I asked him if he like to try some pizzas and its arabic he said “let me see it” in a sad tone. As I opened my pizza box and showed him he said “no thank you”. He was standing there looking at me after he said so which made me ask him why he dint wanna try?
He replied “because am not in a mood to eat anything from this carnival”. I was controlling my laugh while thanking him for the time. I guess he has lost his appetite.
Next I met a couple elderly Sri lankan ladies who asked me what I had to offer. I introduced my arabic pizza and they were excited to taste the pizza. The first lady who tasted in front of me took a bit and replied “your pizza dough tastes different, I like it very much” with a grin and haste to take the next bite.
My last customers were two little sisters who looked like 3rd graders. I sold 4 pizzas to them by encouraging to take home and share with their mum for which they agreed nodding their head happily as if this idea was super and they carefully took the pizzas wrapped in a tissue.
A guess the ingredient game turned out into a pizza sale.
What I gained by this is not something I can describe by just plain words. As a blogger who always keeps taking pictures of food and travel to share and write about this carnival sale experience has been unique. While I earned some cash to pay for my space I also got the opportunity to hear the comments for my zataar and cheddar pizza from 5 different nationalities and I met 12 different people who all had different taste buds. All the comments and compliments made my day.
Finally it was time to pack up after shopping for some achcharu at the achcharu kadey stall and some marshmallows and a lollipop which was imported from Dubai. Finally I managed to have not lost anything but gained a whole new experience.
One main tip based on my experience is that you need to talk to sell what you have and unless you as people to try nobody will bother to ask.
So here is my recipe to the zataar pizza topping.
1 tablespoon zataar
4 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper as required
A handful of grated cheddar
Mix all together and spread over a pizza dough.
Need some extra cheese? Grate on top. Bake until the crust is cooked and cool before cutting.
Serve hot with a ketchup or choice of chicken soup.
Pizza dough from refer my zataar keema pizza recipe.
Alright how this pizza got its name as arabic pizza.
Okay this is how I named it arabic pizza.
I told one person it’s zataar pizza and they were not familiar with it so I had to mention the ingredients used in zataar. But if I say its arabic pizza I don’t have to list the ingredients but only have to mention the origin of the pizza. Another reason why I named it arabic pizza is when I say “arabic pizza” people are excited and eager to have a look or try it out.
So the name arabic pizza helped me sell more.
As this spice zataar is from the gulf I decided to call it arabic pizza.
Hope you enjoyed my story.
Let meet soon with another recipe using my mystery ingredient.