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Moroccan Grilled Chicken Sandwiches with Onion Marmalade

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Yields twelve small sandwiches.

These full-flavored sandwiches pack well, so take them on your next picnic. Covering the focaccia with a layer of arugula not only adds fresh flavor but also keeps the bread from getting soggy.

  • Moroccan Spice Rub 
  • 4 medium boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (7 to 8 oz. each), lightly pounded to an even thickness
  • Vegetable oil as needed
  • 12  2-1/2-inch-square pieces focaccia, sliced in half horizontally and lightly toasted
  • 1 to 2 cups baby arugula, washed and dried
  • Onion Marmalade 
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Grill the chicken:

Heat a gas grill to medium high or prepare a medium-hot charcoal fire. Oil the grill grate. Spread the spice rub on a plate. Lightly rub each chicken breast with oil and press each breast into the spice rub to thoroughly coat one side of the meat.

When the grill is hot, arrange the chicken, spice-rub side down, at a 5-degree angle to the bars of the cooking grate. Grill until the chicken has grill marks, about 2 minutes. Rotate the breasts 90 degrees and continue grilling for 2 minutes. Flip the chicken and cook the second side the same way for another 4 to 6 minutes, until the chicken has crosshatched grill marks and the meat is cooked through. Transfer the breasts to a platter, let cool until barely warm, cover loosely, and refrigerate until you're ready to pack your cooler or assemble the sandwiches.

Build the sandwiches:

Right before you leave for the picnic, or when you reach your destination, slice each breast thinly crosswise, holding the knife at a 45-degree angle. Cover the bottom pieces of focaccia with a layer of arugula (to keep the bread from getting soggy). Top with about a tablespoon of onion marmalade, some sliced chicken breast, a sprinkle of salt, more onion marmalade, and another layer of arugula. Cover with the top pieces of toasted focaccia. Wrap each sandwich tightly in plastic wrap for transport or serve immediately.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : without marmalade; Calories (kcal): 234; Fat (g): fat g 4; Fat Calories (kcal): 36; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 1; Protein (g): protein g 18; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 1; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 32; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 586; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 37; Fiber (g): fiber g 2;

Photo: Scott Phillips

YUM!

We loved this recipe. We used the sherry vinegar and can't imagine the onions without it. I would decrease the sugar a bit however since the sherry vinegar carries some sweetness. Only change we would make is to use 3 pounds of chicken, since you'll have plenty of rub onions to make the extra sandwiches. Also I would up the cayenne just a bit to balance out the sweeter spices, but overall this was a real winner.

This recipe was a crowd pleaser. It was easy to prepare, and all the ingredients are readily on hand. I used the white wine vinegar in the onion marmalade. Next time I will use the sherry vinegar instead; I think it will lend a bit more depth of flavor to the onions. In the spice rub, next time i will add less clove/allspice and add coriander to the mix of spices.

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