Saturday, May 23, 2009

Mediterranean Chicken Sandwiches

If you look on the sidebar or at the bottom of each post, you'll notice that give recipes a grade using the standard system: A to F. You'll also notice that there are almost no Fs, Ds, or Cs and very few Bs; it's mostly As. That's because, at some point on the blogging journey, it felt pointless to post bland, boring, flavorless results. So when I test a recipe that isn't so hot, I (usually) let it fall by the wayside

Which leads me to what I do post: the OPPOSITE of bland, boring or flavorless, but fantastic, scrumptious, dream-about-it-at-night delicious food. And that's what we have here, with these grilled Mediterranean chicken sandwiches.

There are a number of elements that make this sandwich bite-worthy -- grilled ciabatta bread, fresh basil, roasted peppers, melted mozzerella -- but by far, the piece that pushes this sandwich into a category of amazing deliciousness is the sundried tomato pesto mayonaisse. So simple, so tastebud-popping wonderful.

The recipe follows below, but feel free to play with it. Obviously, you could use a grill instead of a broiler and cook it up along with some grilled veggies. Yesterday, I swapped out the chicken and mozzerella for turkey, capicola, and provolone cheese, left off the peppers, added some red onions, and ate it, chilled, as part of a picnic lunch. It was fantastic.

Mediterranean Chicken Sandwiches (source)

1/4 cup (about 2 ounces) sun-dried tomato pesto
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
3/4 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 (8-ounce) loaf ciabatta
12 large basil leaves (or enough to cover the sandwich)
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup sliced bottled roasted red bell peppers
1 large tomato, thinly sliced

Combine pesto and mayonnaise in a small bowl, stirring to blend.

Sprinkle chicken with pepper and salt. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken, and cook for 3 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken to cutting board, and cool slightly. Cut chicken lengthwise into thin slices.

Preheat broiler.

Cut ciabatta in half horizontally. Place bread, cut sides up, on a baking sheet. Broil 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove bread from pan. Spread pesto mayo evenly over cut sides of bread. Arrange the chicken slices evenly over bottom half. Top chicken evenly with basil leaves, and sprinkle cheese over top. Place bottom half on baking sheet, and broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts. Arrange roasted peppers and fresh tomatoes over cheese, and cover with top half of bread. Cut into 4 equal pieces.

1 comment:

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Truly mine kind of fare! That is beautiful. It is sort of a question to post something that is not really good. We learn a lot from less than successful but it often just doesn't do it for a post...