Yesterday being Memorial Day, Mark and I had the day off. He spent most of the day in and out of the bedroom watching war movies and I spent most of the day watching the Food Network and napping in the recliner. Well, they had a marathon of a show we had never watched called The Pioneer Woman. There wasn’t anything on there that we would not at least try but most things we would eat for sure. This was one of them. Our son-in-law Matt showed up about half way through our meal and ate our leftovers. His response was, “Hey, I have a birthday coming up”. I always fix the kids the meal of their choice for their birthdays, this is what Matt wants evidently. I always give my kids what they want for their birthday meals. This is an excellent meal and very inexpensive and easy.
I did modify one thing, I added 2 cloves of fresh minced garlic to the marinade since it didn’t call for it. I have always used garlic in all of my chicken dishes and it didn’t seem right not to use it here.
4 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup Dijon mustard (or country/grainy mustard)
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 1 lemon
Crushed red pepper, for sprinkling, optional
1 pound thick-cut bacon, sliced in half
2 cups grated sharp Cheddar
2 cloves of fresh minced garlic
8 soft whole grain buns
With a very sharp knife, cut the chicken breasts in half down the middle. This will result in 8 chicken breast pieces that are thinner and uniform in size.
Next, make the marinade. In a large bowl mix together the honey, mustard, paprika, salt, pepper to taste, lemon juice and crushed red pepper flakes if using. Stir to combine.
Add the chicken to the marinade and toss to coat. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the fridge, 2 to 4 hours. We marinated ours overnight.
While the chicken marinates, fry up the bacon until chewy. When finished cooking, reserve 1/4 cup of the bacon grease and pour off the rest of the grease (but do not clean the skillet).
When you are ready to cook the chicken, remove it from the marinade and cook it in the skillet over medium-high heat, 3 to 4 minutes each side. Brush a little reserved bacon grease on the chicken as you cook it. (Or you can grill the chicken breasts on an indoor or outdoor grill.)
When a couple of minutes grilling time are left, lay 2 pieces of bacon onto each chicken breast. Top with some Cheddar and allow it to melt on the grill (if you need to remove the chicken you can finish melting the cheese under the broiler).
Halve the rolls and immediately load with the bacon-and-cheese covered chicken.