Mediterranean Vegetable Grilled Wrap

For those of use whose culinary affinities lean strongly toward the…um… “comfort” variety, the month of January can make us feel a little conflicted.  Weight-loss companies urge us to make a New Year’s resolution to go on a diet and to eat healthier but what we like to eat most isn’t usually what one might call “diet friendly”.  Lifestyle magazines show fit everyday Joes holding out the waistbands of their former enormous pants. A verklempt Valerie Bertinelli checks in to see if we’ve “called Jenny yet?”  Even the Food Network airs the Paula Deen episodes where she holds back on the butter (heavens, Miss Paula!) and bakes with Splenda.  I kind of feel like the world is trying to tell us something?

Grill vegetables on the panini press in just 4 minutesAll right, I hear you world.  I don’t like what you’re saying but I understand where you’re coming from.  Maybe it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world to integrate some healthier eating into my diet in the New Year.  I guess I can’t call those last nagging 10 lbs. “baby weight” if I had them before I was pregnant.  And my daughter’s over a year old now.  Sigh.

So rather than make one of my usual comfort fare panini recipes this time around (don’t worry, they’ll be back!), I used my panini press to grill up a lighter wrap.  My Mediterranean Vegetable Grilled Wrap gets a ton of flavor from eggplant, zucchini and red bell peppers that have been marinated in herbs and garlic, a sprinkling of salty feta cheese and some zesty hummus, all rolled up and grilled inside a whole wheat tortilla.  Still comforting, but with less guilt.

Deliciousness waiting to be wrapped!My sister, who’s visiting this week, and I agree – the wrap is a keeper.  The marinated vegetables take just 4 minutes to grill on the panini press and are incredibly flavorful.  My kitchen seriously smelled like a pizza parlor with all the garlic and oregano!  With the texture of the hummus adding an element of “creaminess” inside the wrap, you really don’t miss having a lot of cheese.  Feta has a pretty strong flavor, so a little goes a long way anyway.  I was incredibly pleased that the whole thing held together well during the grilling – a little dab of hummus provided an excellent seal.

I’ll “return to my normal programming” soon enough, but in the meantime do give this one a try!

Mediterranean Vegetable Grilled Wrap

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Mediterranean Vegetable Grilled Wrap

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS:

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus a few teaspoons for brushing
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 Italian or Japanese eggplants, sliced lengthwise 1/4″ thick
2 small zucchini, sliced lengthwise 1/4″ thick
1 red bell pepper, sliced into 1/2″ strips
4 whole wheat tortillas
7 oz. hummus
4 oz. feta, crumbled

DIRECTIONS:

In a large, resealable plastic bag, combine the olive oil, parsley, oregano, basil, vinegar, salt, pepper and garlic. Place the eggplant, zucchini and red bell peppers into the bag. Seal and marinate for 1-2 hours in the refrigerator.

Preheat the panini grill to medium-high heat (375 degrees).

Grill the vegetables for 3-4 minutes until tender and grill marks appear. You will probably need to grill in batches, depending on the size of your grill. Turn off the grill and carefully clean the grates.

Reheat the panini grill to medium-high heat (375 degrees).

Microwave the tortillas on High for about 15 seconds (place a paper towel between each one so they don’t stick together) to make them easier to fold.  Spread about a tablespoon of hummus down the center of each tortilla.  Divide the grilled vegetables and feta crumbles evenly among the tortillas.  Fold in the sides of the tortillas, dabbing a small amount of hummus where the edges meet to seal.  Brush olive oil over the top of the wraps (this will help it to crisp and make grill marks) and place two at a time onto the grill.

Grill for about 4 minutes until the tortillas are toasted, the cheese is melted and grill marks appear.  Serve immediately and enjoy!

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KathyPanini Happy, online since 2008, is more than just a sandwich blog. Here, you'll find hundreds of my original panini recipes, my guide to choosing a panini press and a whole lot of other creative uses for the panini press.
~ Kathy Strahs
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26 Comments

  1. RecipeGirl wrote:

    Sounds delicious! I’m all for eating a bit lighter.

    Posted 1.8.09 Reply
  2. pickycook wrote:

    i am so gonna make this – thanks for sharing! love your site header – very cool!

    Posted 1.8.09 Reply
  3. grace wrote:

    diet? moi? never, i say, as i sit here in my elastic-waisted pants. 🙂
    great wrap, kathy. even for those of us who refuse to diet, it’s a winner.

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  4. Drew wrote:

    That looks so good! Wonderful imagery!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  5. lo! wrote:

    Even on the healthy side, this looks pretty tasty. No dieting here… only feasting on that veggie goodness!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  6. Colleen wrote:

    Mmmm…. You know, this could actually work gluten-free and dairy-free. You’d need to substitute a corn tortilla for the whole-wheat one, and you could marinate and grill some tofu chunks with the veggies, to fill in for the feta cheese. We might have to try this one!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  7. Kristen wrote:

    Do you need a roommate because I seriously want to move in with you. Everything you create has my mouth watering 🙂

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  8. Olga wrote:

    Haven’t visited you in a while.
    This looks like another winner!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  9. Karen wrote:

    Looks delicious. These are some of my favorite ingredients in paninnis!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  10. We’ve switched to oat bran tortillas, which are fairly flimsy and often fall apart if there’s alot of filling. Turning them into a grilled wrap might just solve the problem — thanks for the idea!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  11. HoneyB wrote:

    This looks delicious!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  12. Dragon wrote:

    Healthy and delicious. Almost too good to be true. 🙂

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  13. Pam wrote:

    Love it…want it.

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  14. Kevin wrote:

    A panini wrap is a great idea! This one sounds really tasty!

    Posted 1.9.09 Reply
  15. maris wrote:

    WHOA – Paula Deen baking with Splenda? Has hell frozen over? I never thought I’d see the day!

    Posted 1.10.09 Reply
  16. Brenda T. wrote:

    Ok, I’m seriously thinking of running to the store right now to buy the ingredients for this. I order a similar wrap at a local restaurant year round (no diet reasoning needed nor am I even vegetarian!). I created a similar one myself a few months back using portobello mushrooms and baby spinach too…I’m all for the veggie wrap and this one looks like a keeper too!

    Posted 1.10.09 Reply
  17. This proves that health and comforting isn’t an oxymoron. These looks fabulous, Kathy!

    Posted 1.11.09 Reply
  18. I’ll meet you half way. I love grilled veggies but not the hugest fan of whole wheat wraps. I prefer a nice ciabatta…

    Posted 1.12.09 Reply
  19. Jennifer wrote:

    I’ve been trying to eat a bit more healthy as well, trying being the key word. But these look fabulous, I’d eat them even if I wasn’t trying to be eat more healthy!

    Can’t wait to try them out. 🙂

    Posted 1.12.09 Reply
  20. Thanks for the heavy veggie recipe. We need this post-holidays! 🙂

    Posted 1.13.09 Reply
  21. sharon wrote:

    Thank you for the healthy recipe! My holiday weight has gone nowhere but up!!

    Posted 1.13.09 Reply
  22. Emily wrote:

    This looks absolutely scrumptious! What a terrific idea.

    Posted 1.14.09 Reply
  23. Sandie wrote:

    Just in time! Santa brought me a vegetarian for Christmas!

    (Ok, it wasn’t “Santa,” but my oldest did proclaim, “I don’t want to eat meat anymore. I don’t have a problem with dairy, but no meat.” Technically, I think I have a semi-vegetarian on my hands, and I’m ok with that (not far behind myself).

    Needless to say, these wraps are the perfect thing to whip up in a hurry. Diet, vegetarianism in any form or not—they look perfectly scrumptious to me!

    Posted 1.15.09 Reply
  24. Jude wrote:

    Thanks for the lighter recipe. I could stand to lose a few pounds.

    Posted 1.16.09 Reply