Our teen chef, Kayla, from The Nerdy Chef, created a chicken sandwich recipe inspired by her love of a sandwich she tasted and her love of a hot soup and sandwich in winter. She'll be bringing you more soups soon. I created this chicken sandwich recipe after eating a sandwich in a French restaurant, hence the French name (I'm not sure what a croque means, but poulet is chicken).* I loved the combination of gooey cheese, chicken flavored with Herbes de Provence, and salty, crispy bacon all piled on buttery toasted bread. Of course, I had to put my own spin on it, so I changed the cheese and the seasoning of the chicken. The original sandwich had Swiss cheese, but I prefer Provolone. It melts really well and the mild flavor complements the other components. However, you can use any good melting cheese like cheddar, american, or Swiss. The second change is the chicken. If you're running short on time, you can slice up a rotisserie chicken from your grocery store. If I have the time to cook, though, I found something incredibly easy and incredibly tasty. After I cook the bacon, I leave the fat in the skillet and cook the chicken in it. Yes, I take pieces of chicken and saute it in bacon fat. It absorbs all the flavors of the bacon and stays unbelievably juicy. Again, you can always use store-bought chicken, but this method adds another layer of flavor. If you do buy the chicken already cooked, just skip the marinating and chicken-cooking steps. Either way, you will love this chicken sandwich recipe!
1 lb Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts 8 Slices Bread 3 T Butter 8 Strips Bacon 8 Slices Cheese 2 Cups Buttermilk
Trim the chicken breasts and season with salt and pepper. Marinate in the buttermilk overnight.
Cook the bacon to the desired crispiness. Heat a grill and pat the chicken dry. Grill the chicken until cooked through. Slice into 1/4" thick slices. (If using rotisserie chicken, skip these steps.)
Lay a slice of cheese on each piece of bread. Top half of them with two strips of bacon each and equal portions of the chicken. Lay the other slices of bread on top.
Heat some of the butter in a grill pan or panini press. Cook the sandwiches until browned and cheese is melted.
Makes 4 Sandwiches
*Editor's note: croque in the instance and with a croque-monsieur translates to "crispy" or "crunchy" since the sandwich typically is!