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Toasted Spelt Open-Faced Sandwich With Mediterranean Orzo

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Toasted Spelt Open-Faced Sandwich With Mediterranean Orzo

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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
This meal has a lot going on lots of veggies, some delicious spreads, and a mix of greens. It’s filling and a perfect lunch meal. I don’t make a lot of dishes with eggplant, although I should more often. Need more recipes…so if you have some good ones, submit them here! However, one of my favorite ways to eat eggplant is grilled like in this dish.


  • Eggplant (you do not need to peel it; I prefer the skin on for added flavor)
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 Red and yellow bell pepper (cored and seeded)
  • 1 cup Grape tomatoes
  • 1-2 cloves crushed garlic
  • Orzo
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 small can of black pitted kalamata olives
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • Mixture of lettuce: I like arugula and spinach
  • Romano cheese or our Vegan Nut Cheese (get the recipe here.)
  • Spelt bread
  • Hummus
  • Sesame seeds (to taste)


Directions for Preparing Eggplant

  • Prepare the eggplant by slicing 1/4 to 1/2 inch slices
  • Place on tray and season lightly with salt and pepper
  • Let sit for 30-60 minutes (you’re allowing the eggplant to sweat out some of its water content…the eggplant will literally get beads of moisture on it), prepare orzo while waiting for eggplant
  • Rinse the eggplant before grilling or broiling otherwise it may be too salty
  • Place on grill or under broiler for about 3-4 minutes or until soft; flipping them is a good idea

Directions for Roasting Peppers

  • Clean and remove core, seeds, and white lining of bell pepper, rinse
  • Place foil on baking pan
  • Broil the peppers on high, watching them carefully…you want them charred on the outside
  • Remove and wrap the foil around them to allow them to steam and further soften for 10 minutes
  • Under cool water rub gently to remove the skin of the pepper

Directions for Grilled Red Onion

  • Peel onion and cut into thick one-inch slices, remove outer skin
  • Place on cutting board and drizzle lightly with olive oil
  • Season with rosemary, sea salt, pepper
  • Cook on stovetop using a non-stick griddle for about 5-7 minutes or until the onion caramelizes (you want the onion tender but not mushy)
  • Just before removing from heat, add a splash of balsamic vinegar

Directions for the Mediterranean Orzo

  • Boil the orzo per the package instructions, I like this type of orzo
  • Drain orzo
  • Stir in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and crushed garlic, sauté
  • Return orzo to the pot with olive oil and garlic
  • Add drained olives, chopped red and yellow bell pepper and grape tomatoes
  • Add seasonings: lemon juice, sea salt, simmer for 10 minutes over low heat

Directions for Open-Faced Sandwich

  • Toast your spelt bread
  • Spread hummus on it
  • Place grilled eggplant and red onion on it
  • Layer with salad
  • Serve with Mediterranean orzo and top with sesame seeds, chopped fresh basil, Romano cheese or our Vegan Nut Cheese.
Author: Phoebe Chongchua

Phoebe Chongchua is a multimedia brand journalist who consults and writes on wellness, all things plant-based, fitness, lifestyle, and travel. She is yoga certified and earned her certificate in Whole Food Plant-Based Eating in 2010 through eCornell and the T. Colin Campbell Foundation. She's also a top podcaster for her marketing/storytelling podcast, The Brand Journalism Advantage at

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