Chicken Melt with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Pesto

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IMG_20150529_124321[1] 29/05/2015

Grilled cheese sandwiches are one of my absolute favourite lunches at the moment. They’re so simple to do, you can put in whatever cheeses and extras and bread you like, they’re gooey and oozy and cheesy and warming.

This is a particular favourite of mine at the moment. Fresh pesto with oozing mozzarella, succulent chicken and salty sweet tomatoes encased in fresh crunchy ciabatta. Yum.

Use small, fresh mozzarella balls (bocconcini) or cut slices from a larger ball of fresh mozzarella for ideal results. If you absolutely cannot find fresh mozzarella then you can substitute it for whole milk mozzarella cheese that you grate yourself. Please don’t use the grated, bagged stuff. It is dusted with a powder to keep it from clumping. This also keeps it from melting into that creamy, gooey, stringy mozzarella we love so dearly.

(Makes 6 sandwiches)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of excess fat
  • salt and pepper
  • 6 ciabatta rolls, halved as for sandwiches
  • 6 tablespoons Sun-Dried Tomatoes
  • 6 tablespoons pesto,homemade or shop bought
  • 6 slices fresh mozzarella (about 6oz)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Butterfly the chicken breasts lightly bash them with a rolling to pin to flatten slightly then sprinkle both sides generously with salt and pepper and a little rapeseed oil. Pan fry over a medium heat until just cooked through then remove to a board to rest. You may need to do this in batches. Don’t crowd the pan.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the grill to medium. Place the sun dried tomatoes over one half of each Ciabatta then top with slices of mozzarella. When the grill is up to temperature, lay out all the ciabatta rolls crust side down. Grill the rolls lightly until the cheese begins to melt and bread becomes slightly crispy.
  3. When the cheese is hot all the way through, remove the rolls from the grill then slice the chicken and portion onto the rolls. Spread pesto onto the plain half of each roll then sandwich everything together for a gooey feast.
  4. If desired, slice the sandwich in half on the diagonal. Serve hot, warm, or room temperature.

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