This creation mixes and matches ingredients from the countries of the Mediterranean: grilled portobello mushrooms from Italy, olive oil from France or Spain, hummus-tahini spread from the Middle East.

“This sandwich was my wife’s idea,” says David Holben, the executive chef at Dallas’ Mediterraneo. “She’s a vegetarian and she asked me to fix something she could eat when she dropped by the restaurant. I suggested grilled vegetables; she came up with the idea of a chick-pea spread instead of butter….It’s a great summer dish,” says Holben, “healthy and good-looking, with lots of flavor.” Best of all, you can cook it outside when it’s too hot to stay in the kitchen.

Hummus-Tahini Spread

1 15- or 16-ounce can garbanzos (chick peas)
2 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
1 tablespoon pure olive oil
1 teaspoon fresh pressed garlic or prepared garlic paste
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

Drain garbanzos, reserving liquid. Blend first 5 ingredients in food processor or blender, adding enough liquid to mix. Season to taste.

Shallot-Mustard Vinaigrette

1/2 cup champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups pure olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix vinegar and mustard in a stainless steel bowl. Add olive oil in a steady stream, beating with wire whisk until well blended. Add shallots and season to taste.


1 large red bell pepper
1 large yellow bell pepper
2 medium zucchini
1 medium yellow squash
1 head fennel
3 portobello mushrooms
1/4 cup pure olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
Salt and pepper to taste
12 slices walnut bread or bread of choice, 6 slices if large
Alfalfa sprouts

Start heating grill. Cut peppers into eighths, removing seeds and stems. Cut zucchini, squash, and fennel lengthwise into slices 1/4 inch thick and 2 inches wide. Remove stems from portobello mushrooms. Place with vegetables in bowl and lightly coat with olive oil; add thyme and rosemary. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Lightly brush bread with olive oil. Grill bread until toasted on each side. Grill vegetables 4 to 5 minutes on each side until browned and crisp-tender. Keep warm.

To assemble sandwiches, spread hummus on bread, top with vegetables, and drizzle vinaigrette on vegetables. Garnish with alfalfa sprouts and serve with your favorite potato salad. Makes 6 large or 12 small open-faced sandwiches.

18111 Preston Road
Dallas, Texas