It’s no secret that I am fond of sandwiches. I pretty much will take them any way I can get them, whether it be grilled, open-faced, or even pressed. I really like pressed sandwiches because they really lock in all of the flavor that you put between those two halves of bread. Without pressing, the flavors would be completely different, and while not necessarily in a bad way, I think the flavors just meld together so nicely in a pressed sandwich. Chicken, bacon, and tomato pressed sandwiches are my take on that.
My mom has to be my main source of inspiration. She comes up with more ideas than me for things to make. She had an idea for a red, white, and blue themed sandwich or burger and I took that and ran with it. Would it be a burger stuffed with bleu cheese? Freshly cut tomatoes? Roasted tomatoes? The possibilities were endless, but I really liked the combination that I ended up with. I tried this sandwich with bleu cheese and while it was good, I much preferred the provolone.
This is a great sandwich for backyard barbecues (even if it isn’t red, white, and blue!) because you can eat it at room temperature. If you’re going on a picnic or need something that travels well, my suggestion would be to make the sandwich and leave out the honey mustard on the actual sandwich and just bring a container of it with you so that guests can spread it on, because honey mustard and chicken and bacon kind of just need each other.
Chicken, Bacon, and Tomato Pressed Sandwiches
1 loaf of ciabatta bread
12-14 cherry tomatoes
2 tsps chopped thyme
Salt and pepper, to taste
4 Tbsp mayonnaise
4 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 Tbsp honey
6 slices of bacon
4-6 chicken breasts
8 slices provolone cheese
Begin by prepping the bread. Slice off the outside perimeter, and slice the bread lengthwise, creating two halves. Next, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a small baking dish, place the tomatoes, thyme, salt and pepper, and olive oil and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until tomatoes are blistered.
While the tomatoes are cooking, prep the honey mustard. Combine the mayonnaise, dijon mustard, and honey and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place in fridge.
Heat a skillet to medium high and cook the bacon strips until crisp. Drain the grease, except for 2-3 Tbsp and place the chicken breasts, being careful not to over-crowd, in the oil. Cook on both sides until browned and fully cooked through. Repeat with remaining chicken breasts.
To assemble the sandwich, spread the honey mustard on the bottom half of the bread and layer the chicken, bacon, provolone cheese, and tomatoes, arranging the tomatoes towards the center of the sandwich, because when pressed they will migrate to the sides. Finish by putting another layer of the honey mustard on the top half of the bread and place on top.
Wrap the sandwich in a few layers of saran wrap so that it is tightly sealed and nothing will leak out. Place a heavy book or cast iron skillet on top to weigh it down and place in the fridge for at least an hour.
Unwrap and slice and serve immediately.