Thursday, July 21, 2011

Balsamic Chicken Sandwich

Showing my sandwich with the works, Kev's minus tomato and the girls minus tomato and basil.
A lot of times when we camp I keep the meals really simple.  Last night, with this recipe, corn on the cob, swiss chard and watermelon, I think I outdid myself a little.  I clipped this out of some magazine in the spring.  It’s from Jessica Seinfeld, Jerry’s wife.  She said, “Once, on a trip to Italy, Jerry had a sandwich he loved so much that he didn’t stop talking about it for years.”  So she experimented and came up with this, which according to Jerry, hit it right on.  I figured that if it was good enough for Jerry, it would be good enough for me and Kev.  Kev gave it two thumbs and I thought it was great too.  I’ll post the recipe as is, then tell how I changed it.
Balsamic Chicken Sandwich
2 lb boneless, skinless chicken beasts, cubed
½ t. salt
½ t. pepper
¼ c. whole wheat flour
3 T. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
½ c. balsamic vinegar (must be balsamic)
6 T. firmly packed dark-brown sugar
½ c. broccoli puree (**see recipe below)
6 Ciabetta rolls
6 large tomato slices
½ cup grated mozzarella
Fresh Basil
  1. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper.  Spread flour on a sheet of waxed paper.  Toss chicken chunks in flour to coat completely.  Preheat oven to 350’F.
  2. Warm oil in a large skillet over medium-high.  Add chicken and garlic.  Lower heat to medium and continue to cook until chicken begins to brown and garlic becomes fragrant, 8-10 minutes. 
  3. Add chicken broth, vinegar and brown sugar.  Bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer 10-15 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.  Add puree and cook 2-3 more minutes until flavors are blended.
  4. Place rolls on a large baking sheet.  Top each of the 6 bottom halves with tomato slice and fresh basil.  Divide chicken among them and sprinkle with mozzarella.  Bake until cheese is melted and edges of the rolls are crisp, 5-7 minutes.  Serve immediately.
This is what I did differently:  I halved the recipe, which made 4 sandwiches.  I used regular flour instead of whole wheat, and I used Bolillios Rolls instead of Ciabatta.   I asked Kev to stop by Walmart and pick rolls up for me and this is what he came home with.  They worked great.  I also used mozzarella slices instead of grated.  And I highly encourage you to not scrimp on the fresh basil leaves.  They were yummo!

**For Broccoli Puree:  Steam frozen or fresh florets until tender but still bright green.  Puree in food processor or blender, about 2minutes.  If needed, add a few teaspoons of water for a smooth, creamy texture.

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