Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Blackened Chicken Sandwich

I haven't gone on a bike ride in TOO LONG.   I love riding my bike, but carrying it down 4 flights of steps, and then back up again is a pain, and I haven't been in the mood to workout outside in the 100 + heat index lately. 

So I drug my bike down the steps on Monday and WALKED it to work because I had left my car at work, and my pump was in my car, and I had a flat tire.  So I walked the 3 blocks to work.  But while I was walking out my door, I felt a rain drop on my arm... But it wasn't a rain drop.  It was BIRD POOP! 

And then I got to the trail and got about a mile in and felt another rain drop... MORE POOP!



I got pooped on TWICE by a bird.  They say that's good luck.  I believe it.  I've had great luck lately, and I hit it out of the park with my dinner Monday night...  

This recipe is my version of the blackened chicken sandwich at The Continental in the East Village in Des Moines.   It's my boyfriend's FAVORITE food.  He once ordered two sandwiches at once. And ate them both. 

There are a million herbs and spices in this recipe, but it's not difficult... And I had all the spices in my spice rack. (I was going to say, it's herbs and spices that everyone has in their spice rack... But I'm a spice freak)


Blackened Chicken Sandwich
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • take and bake ciabatta 
  • avocado
  • chopped basil
  • 2 slices provolone cheese
That's enough for 2 chicken breasts.

Rinse and pat dry your chicken breast. Pound it down so it's even thickness all the way through. Cover it on both sides with the seasoning. Put it in a HOT pan sprayed with a little Pam. I prefer a cast iron, but any oven-safe pan will work. 

Cook on each side, don't be afraid of the seasoning getting black, it's just the sugar caramelizing and mixing with the other spices.

Once it's dark on both sides, put it in a 425 degree oven until it's cooked through. 

Take it out of the oven and put a slice of cheese on each one.  While that melts, get your sandwich ready.  Some  warmed-up ciabatta slathered with buttery avocado mixed with some chopped basil (or basil mayo, if you're trying to be exactly like The Continental). Top each slice with your chicken.

I started to dig in before taking a picture....  Yum.


 I also whipped up some homemade whipped cream.  I usually just buy it from the freezer section, like everyone else... But I thought I'd try my hand at the fresh stuff.  And I found out, it's SO EASY and 20 million times better. 

A small carton of whipping cream and 3 Tablespoons of powdered sugar.  Whip that up in your Kitchenaid.  Thank me later. 

Perfect on a strawberry shortcake. 

I would share the recipe for my shortcake, but I got one online and it wasn't perfect.  I have to copy the recipe we used to use as kids.  It was always my favorite dessert.  


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