Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Chicken Panini with Brie and Fig Jam

Sweet, creamy, savory, earthy, you name it—and all in a simple sandwich, pan-grilled to golden-goodness in about 20 minutes. Panini sandwiches are wonderfully versatile, combining flavors and textures between two slices of hearty, crusty bread.

Here, I used slices cut from a loaf of sourdough, but you can use any bread you like—just be sure it’s firm enough to stand up to the heat (and the press).

Sourdough Bread Slices
Note: You can substitute a large boneless, skinless chicken breast-half in place of 3-ounce chicken tenders. Simply cut the breast lengthwise into about 3-ounce strips.

Serves 3

  • olive oil, for brushing
  • 3 3-oz chicken breast tenders
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup chopped chard
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 6 slices crusty sourdough bread, about 1/3-inch thick and 6 inches long
  • 3 oz brie, room temperature
  • 6 tbsp fig jam
  • 2 large radishes, very thinly sliced
Chicken Tenders
Chopped Chard 
Brie and Fig Jam
  1. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat and brush with olive oil. Season the chicken tenders with salt and pepper and grill until golden on both sides and just cooked through, about 10 minutes total.
  2. Transfer to a cutting board. (Do not wipe out the pan.) When the chicken is cool enough to handle, cut into thin slices.
Chicken Beginning to Grill 
Grilled Chicken
Sliced Chicken
  1. Meanwhile, toss the chard and vinegar in a small bowl.
  2. Lay the bread slices on a work surface. Spread 3 slices with brie and the other 3 slices with fig jam. Divide the chicken on top of the brie and top with chard and radish slices. Close the sandwiches with the fig-spread slices of bread and press down gently.
  3. Re-heat the grill pan over medium-high heat and brush lightly with olive oil. Place the panini in the pan and place a grill press on top (or use a heavy skillet as a press).
  4. Grill until the bread shows grill marks on the bottom, 3-4 minutes. Turn and grill, continuing to press, until the sandwiches are hot throughout and the cheese has melted, about 3 minutes longer.
Bread with Brie and Fig Jam 
Chicken Added 
Chard and Radishes Added 
Panini Beginning to Grill
After Turning
To serve, place the panini on a cutting board and cut each in half. Serve right away.

Chicken Panini with Chard, Brie, and Fig Preserves

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