Jan is having another potluck with her students. San Jose anthropology students present papers at the SWAA conference every year. To prepare them, the professors have them present before each other and two professors for feedback and suggestions. Since they come in on a Saturday to do this, food is usually involved.
I suggested hummus wrap sandwiches. Lavash is a thin and large Middle Eastern flat bread— usually 12-14 inches wide and up to two feet long. Traditionally it is oval in shape, but some modern bakeries produce a rectangular bread that is perfect for evenly wrapping around fillings.
This is one of those dishes where it is best to have all of the ingredients prepped before you start wrapping. I made 5 wraps and then cut each, cross-ways, into 5 pinwheel sandwiches. Not everyone will be making these wraps for a crowd, so I have included the measurements for making a single wrap in (brackets)—which can be easily scaled up to suit your needs.
After Event Note: The students really liked these. In fact there was a heated discussion over who would take the leftovers home for dinner. Fortunately, there was an even number and the issue was settled amicably.
Karl’s California Fusion Hummus Wraps
1½ cups plain hummus (⅓ cup±)
2 Tbs. habanero sauce (1 tsp.±)
4 Tbs. tahini (2 tsp.)
4 Tbs. olive oil (2 tsp.)
4 Tbs. lemon juice (2 tsp.)
1 tsp. white balsamic vinegar (dash)
½ tsp. garlic, crushed (pinch)
pinch sugar (sprinkle)
pinch salt (sprinkle)
pinch black pepper (sprinkle)
2 Tbs. hot water (1 tsp.)
For each sheet of lavash (I used 5)
3-4 leaves Romain lettuce
½ beefsteak tomato, thinly sliced
¼ cup carrot, grated
15-20 leaves of mint, separated
¼ cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
8-10 Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
3-4 Persian pickles, quartered lengthwise
1. Mix the hummus and habanero sauce and let it meld for at least 30 minutes.
Note: I used Apple Smoked Habanero Hot Sauce.
2. Mix the tahini dressing ingredients and let them meld for at least 30 minutes.
Tip: The tahini will absorb the liquid in the sauce making it very thick. You may need to add additional hot water to thin it out before using it.
3. Cut the ribs out of the leaves of Romain and set them aside.
Tip: In the past I have tried to simply cut the leaves in half. The problem here is that the ribs are hard and the lavash is thin enough for them to punch through. Placing the ribs in the center of the wrap solves this problem and also give you a nice crunch in your sandwich.
4. Slice the tomato as thinly as you can.
Tip: A mandoline is a very useful device for this. I was able to make 1/16 inch slices and lay many slices across the sandwich.
Note: If you are cutting the tomato by hand you want at least 4 slices to cover all away across the lavash.
5. When all of your ingredients are prepared, lay a sheet of lavash on a clean surface.
Tip: You want the short side facing toward you.
6. Use a spatula to spread the hummus all over the surface of the bread.
Tip: As you put on your ingredients you want to leave the third that is farthest from you clear. The hummus on this section will act as glue to hold your wraps together after you cut it up.
7. Lay the Romain leaves over the first third of the lavash and place the tomato slices over them.
Tip: You want all of your ingredients spread evenly across the bread, so that each cut sandwich gets it fair share.
8. Sprinkle the grated carrots over the tomatoes.
9. Scatter the mint leaves and cilantro over the middle third of the lavash.
10. Scatter the olives and pickles over the mint and cilantro.
Tip: You want to lay the pickles crosswise, so that they roll up easily.
Note: Persian pickles come in various sizes. The ones I was using were ⅜-½ an inch thick and three inches long. Others pickles picked later and are ¾-1 inch thick and 4-5 inches long. Adjust the amount used as appropriate and to your taste.
11. Sprinkle the dressing over the fillings.
12. Lay the Romain ribs cross-ways at the leading edge of the lavash and roll it up fairly tightly away from you.
Tip: You do not want to crush your fillings or tear your lavash, but you do not want a loose wrap either.
13. Let the wrap sit with the seam side down for a few minutes.
Tip: This rest is to give the hummus time to fuse the sandwich together.
14. Cut each wrap four times to make five pinwheel sandwiches and serve.