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Grilled Caprese Chicken with Balsamic Glaze

Grilled Caprese Chicken with Balsamic Glaze
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Ingredients

  • 4 chicken breasts, 6 ounces each, pounded slightly to an even layer or 2 chicken breasts, sliced horizontally, pounded if necessary, into cutlets (grilling directions are different for cutlets)
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning or my Italian Herb Blend
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt & pepper as desired
  • A little bit of olive oil for brushing grill and bread, if grilling
  • 4 slices Italian or French bread, cut on the diagonal, about an inch thick for sandwiches or salad greens for salad
  • 4 slices tomato, about 3/8 inch thick for sandwiches, or 8 ounces cherry tomatoes, sliced or halved for salad
  • 4 slices of fresh mozzarella, sliced about 3/8 inch thick
  • several basil leaves dropped on top whole or thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoons butter

Instructions

Mix Italian seasoning and garlic powder. Sprinkle chicken on both sides. Sprinkle with salt & pepper if desired. For most flavor, give the chicken some time; an hour is good, overnight is better.

As chicken is cooking, put balsamic and honey in a small saucepan and reduce to about 1/2 the volume. When finished, swirl in butter, then set aside to cool. The reduction happens quickly; watch closely. It will bubble up as it boils.

Grilling full-sized breasts:

  • If using charcoal, build a two-level fire by arranging all coals over half of grill, leaving other half empty. Grill is ready when side with coals is medium-hot (you can hold your hand 5 inches above grate for 3 to 4 seconds). If using a gas grill, heat one side to medium-hot. Clean grill when hot with a wire brush.Brush the cool side of grill with a little olive oil (use tongs and a bit of wadded up paper towel). Place chicken on cooler side of grill, smooth-side down, with thicker side facing coals. Cover with a disposable pan and cook until bottom of chicken just begins to develop light grill marks and is no longer translucent, 6 to 9 minutes.
  • Using tongs, flip chicken, and rotate so that thinner side faces coals. Cover with disposable pan and continue to cook until chicken is opaque and firm to touch and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of chicken registers 140 degrees, 6 to 9 minutes longer.
  • Brush a little olive oil on the hotter side of the grill. Move chicken to hotter side of grill and cook, uncovered, until dark grill marks appear, 1 to 2 minutes. Using tongs, flip chicken and cook until dark grill marks appear and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of chicken registers 160 degrees F., 1 to 2 minutes longer. Move chicken to the cool side of the grill. Top with mozzarella, cover with pan for just a moment until cheese is beginning to melt.

Grilling Cutlets:

  • If using charcoal, build a two-level fire by arranging all coals over half of grill, leaving other half empty. Grill is ready when side with coals is medium-hot (you can hold your hand 5 inches above grate for 3 to 4 seconds). If using a gas grill, heat one side to medium-hot. Clean grill when hot with a wire brush.
  • Brush the hot side of with a little olive oil (use tongs and a bit of wadded up paper towel). Place chicken on hot side of the grill until nice grill marks appear, turn over and cook until just done (160 degrees F. Move to cool side, top with mozzarella, cover and leave for just a moment until cheese is beginning to melt.

In the meantime, place bread (brush with olive oil first if desired) if using on the hot side of the grill and lightly toast if or arrange salad on a platter. When finished, add chicken to bread or salad, top with tomatoes. Drizzle with balsamic reduction and sprinkle with basil.

Keywords: balsamic reduction, Balsamic Vinegar, Bargain Meal of the Week, Cheese, Chicken, Grilled or Smoked, Italian, Main dish salad, Mozzarella, Salad, Sandwiches, Tomatoes, Vinegar.

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