- 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- Salt and pepper
- 2 teaspoons herbes de Provence
- 1 tablespoon high-heat oil
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 4 ounces chèvre cheese
- 1 loaf rustic country-style bread (unsliced)
- 1/2 cup basil pesto
Various toppings, choices include:
- Thinly sliced salami
- Thinly sliced and grilled zucchini
- Thinly sliced and grilled eggplant
- Roasted red peppers
- Oil-cured tomatoes
- Chopped Kalamata olives
- Arugula leaves
- Basil leaves
- Spinach leaves
Season chicken with salt, pepper and herbes de Provence. Heat oil in a small pan over medium heat, and sauté chicken until done through, about 8 minutes to a side. The chicken should be between 160° F and 165° F in the center. Chill thoroughly and keep refrigerated until ready to prepare the sandwich. You may do this step up to one day in advance.
Combine cheeses and set aside. Slice chicken into thin medallions.
With a serrated knife, cut bread crosswise into 3 layers (like a layer cake) and lay the individual layers out on a work area. Spread the bottom layer with a generous amount of cheese mixture. Spread a thin layer of pesto on top. Distribute half the chicken slices evenly over pesto. Layer up a selection of your other favorite toppings (a thin layer or scattering of each).
Prepare the second layer: take the middle slice of bread and spread it with a nice amount of cheese mixture and top with a little pesto. Place remaining chicken slices on top and layer on your other ingredients. Place this layer of bread on top of the bottom one. Place the top slice of bread on your masterpiece.
If you are going to serve it right away, secure the whole thing with skewers, spaced about 1 inch or so apart, and slice it into servings between the skewers. If you are going to transport it, wrap it well and take the skewers with you. Insert them before you slice the sandwich at your location.
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