Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches

If you're following the meal plan this week, you were probably expecting a rosemary pot roast to be featured as tonight's recipe. Unfortunately, I forgot to remove the roast from my freezer to thaw (don't you just hate it when that happens?!). So I bumped tomorrow's post about these wonderful Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches to tonight. Stay tuned tomorrow to read how that pot roast turns out.

While I had originally planned to make these sandwiches for dinner, I made them for lunch instead. Lately, our summer days are so busy that lunch is a rushed affair. I'm turning out cold cut sandwiches or heating up leftovers as quickly as possible before we are off and running to the next daycamp, swim lesson, or playdate. However, last week, we found ourselves stuck in the house on a stormy summer day with nothing planned. Ahhh. I don't know about you, but I need a day like this every once in a while to re-group (and fold laundry). Since I had the time, and I was craving something different from our usual round-up of lunchtime staple foods, I decided to make these sandwiches.

Here's how they came together:

First, I thick-sliced some zucchini (fresh from our garden!) and a red onion. Then I halved a lemon.

Next, I cut some rolls (purchased from the bakery at our local supermarket) in half and brushed them with olive oil.

To the remaining olive oil, add some balsamic vinegar.

Liberally brush the zucchini, onion, and lemon with the oil and vinegar mixture. Sidenote: if you're wondering about those spots on my sliced zucchini pictured below, it's because they had started to freeze. Someone "accidentally" altered one of the temperature settings inside of our fridge. I had lots of frosty stuff the next day. I'm just glad that I figured out what was wrong before I called a repair person! Gotta love those mischievous 3 year olds!

This recipe was designed for the grill, but because of the rain, I enlisted my Pampered Chef Grill Pan.

Sales pitch time... I love this grill pan! It arrived in my kit when I became a PC consultant back in February. Paired with the grill press, which is one of the first items I purchased with the points I earned after my first Pampered Chef show, I use it way more than I ever imagined for everything from grilled chicken and burgers to paninis and bacon. This month, the Grill Pan Set is on special. You can get the grill pan, press, scraper, and recipe cards for $34 off! If you're in the market for a grill pan/press you can check out the deal HERE. The grilling season is too short for me here in Northeastern Ohio, so I'm all about being able to bring the grilling inside!

I grilled the veggies until they were tender-crisp and had some of those beautiful grill marks on them. Oh, and I put the lemon halves on, cut side down, to grill too.

I removed the veggies and then placed the cut side of the rolls down on the grill pan until they began to toast.

Once toasted, place the bottom half of each roll on a plate. Now we're ready to build a sandwich!

First, the zucchini.

Then the onion.

And now for some feta cheese. I used a tomato-basil feta that I had leftover from the cucumber ribbon salad I made a while back. YUM!

For a finishing touch, I squeezed a little of the grilled lemon over the top.

Wow! These flavors were wonderful together. I felt like I was dining on a bistro's patio when I sat down on our deck to polish this sandwich off.

Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches adapted from

4 ciabatta or other sandwich rolls (split)
1 lemon (halved)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 zucchini (summer squash cut lengthwise in 1/2 inch slices)
1 red onion (cut into 1/2 inch slices)
2 oz tomato-basil feta cheese (crumbled)

1. Lightly brush one tablespoon olive oil on the cut sides of the rolls and lemon halves; set aside.
2. Combine remaining oil and vinegar in a small bowl.
3. Brush a little of mixture on zucchini and onion, then season with salt and pepper.
4. Grill zucchini and onion, over medium heat, until tender, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.
5. Meanwhile toast rolls, cut side down, about 3 minutes.
6. Place vegetables on rolls, top with feta and drizzle with remaining vinegar and oil and squeezed lemon juice.

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