Okay, can you say inspiration? I always seem to get food inspiration at the weirdest times, for instance, when I’m sick at home with the flu or even at 2a.m. when I can’t sleep a wink. That being said, the idea for this sandwich came to me at the most obvious time possible, while grocery shopping at Costco. I was perusing the imported cheese case, as I’m usually prone to do, when I found a very reasonably priced triple-creme French cheese by the name of le Delice de Bourgogne. Between the cheese and a fresh loaf of rosemary olive oil bread, a plan formed and my excitement was honestly not to be contained. All I needed was a few more ingredients, a killer sauce, and magic was around the corner. I attended to the rest of my weekly errands with one goal in mind, and basically went on a food buying spree, grabbing anything and everything that peaked my curiosity. I’m a total food geek and it was the most fun I’d had in a long time. Plus, by the time I got home I knew exactly what I was making and even thought of a way to use a brand new gadget, courtesy of my brother. This is one of those recipes that I’m going to have to insist that you try because, yes, it’s really that good.
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Rosemary Olive Oil Bread (or any nice crusty bread)
le Delice de Bourgogne Cheese (or a nice triple-creme brie)
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Yay! Here’s the debut of my new gadget…a pilon, straight from Puerto Rico. As I’ve mentioned before, my family is Puerto Rican and we really enjoy our heritage through food, so when my brother returned from a recent trip to the island with a handcrafted pilon, sort of a wooden mortar and pestle, I was thrilled. My mom bought an almost identical one almost 10 years ago, and I’ve wanted my own for a long time. Well, I’ve digressed much too far now, so first off, you should tear the leaves off of your tarragon and rosemary and remove the skin from the garlic. Throw it all in your mortar and pestle with some salt and pepper.
Now have some fun and crush it up as much as you can. If you don’t have a mortar and pestle just coursely chop it all together.
Set aside and begin prepping your chicken. As usual, you want to clean off any excess fat and then you should split the breasts as demonstrated in my Cheesy Chicken Roll-Ups.
Toss them all in a dish, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle on the herb and garlic mixture.
Mix everything up and set aside to marinate well you work on the other components. Now’s a good time to cook up your bacon. In the past year, I’ve discovered that I really like to cook bacon in the toaster oven when I have the time. The bacon doesn’t curl up and the scent doesn’t infiltrate your home so much. So that’s what I did hear. Depending on the thickness of the bacon, I usally cook it on 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, if the bacon is thinner, decrease the time.
While the bacon cooks, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and throw in your chicken.
Sautee on both sides until nicely browned, add a couple tablespoons of butter, and sprinkle the whole thing with some flour.
Toss everything around to work in the flour and allow it to cook out for a few minutes to lose the raw taste. Once a bit of a roux has formed and cooked up, add a few ounces of a tasty white wine.
Bring to boil and let the alcohol cook out. This is important! If you don’t give the alcohol a few minutes to cook out, the sauce will curdle in the next step. Once it comes to a boil and simmers for a minute you can add in the cream.
Stir to combine and allow to simmer so the sauce is thick enough to coat the chicken with a couple tablespoons leftover for drizzling. While the sauce thickens, cut the bread into 2-3 inch wide pieces, spread each side with a healthy amount of the cheese, and layer bacon on both sides.
Once the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is nice and thick, place one breast portion on the bread and drizzle with a little more sauce.
To fancy it up a bit more, serve with a bistro salad of greens, dried fruit, and nuts and some roasted potatoes. Now, please, please, please ENJOY the creamy, bacony goodness!