Open-Faced Chicken Sandwich with Charred Corn Salsa

I may be jumping the gun a little bit…I’m cooking as though we are in the midst of summer. But then again, I’ve never really been one to follow the rules, if there even are really any rules of the seasons. Nowadays, you can get pretty much any fruit or vegetable all year long, you know? And I had such a craving for charred corn, that I had to pick up some corn this weekend. That led to charred jalapeños, which led to grilled chicken, and then it just snowballed into this open-faced chicken sandwich with charred corn salsa.

The weather couldn’t have been more perfect this weekend at the cabin, making me feel as though we were already in the summer months. I had every single window open all weekend long, clearing the winter doldrums right out of the cabin. I’d wake up every morning to the sound of a grosbeak singing it’s sweet song, feeling happy and content, until I stuck my feet out from under the blankets, and the cold air told me that it was just too soon to sleep with every window open, even when the steam from my breath didn’t give it away! But that didn’t stop me from doing it again the second night! Like I said, I’m jumping the gun, and that’s totally okay by me! Cold tootsies never hurt anyone, right?

I spent the whole weekend trying to find the bird with that beautiful little song that woke me up every morning, overlooking a family of pretty little black and white birds with red breasts, the whole time thinking that they were woodpeckers! After endless hours of searching the trees, I finally stopped to look at those black and white birds perched on the suet, and realized that they were not woodpeckers. I looked them up in my bird book, saw that they were grosbeaks, and then googled their sound on my phone. Sure enough, what was right in front of my face the whole time, is what I spent hours looking for! The sweetest little things, their chatter and song just makes me happy…and along with this sandwich, they’re already my favorite part of what is soon to be summer!

So, this sandwich… is most definitely light and fresh, but with an attitude! There is a definite sweetness from the corn, tomatoes and dressing, with a hint of charred flavor from the corn and jalapeños, savory from the chicken and buttery garlic toast, a bite from the onions and jalapenos, a tang from the olives and blue cheese, and a creaminess from the avocados and eggs. I’m not kidding when I say that it’s a different flavor with every bite!

Life is good. It’s a “Sometimes what you’re looking for has been right under your nose without you even knowing it…” kind of good.

Open-Faced Chicken Salad with Charred Corn Salsa
Serves: 2 Servings
Charred Corn Salsa
  • 2 ears corn, shucked
  • ½ to 1 whole jalapeno
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp red onion, minced
  • ¼ cup Variety of kalamata and green olives, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup sweet red or yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 avocado, cut into ½” cubes
  • 1-2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
The Dressing
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp dill weed
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
The Garlic Toast
  • 1 baguette, sliced lengthwise
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp parsley
The Sandwich
  • Spring greens
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts, grilled (fully cooked, and sliced)
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  • Crumbled blue cheese
Charred Corn Salsa
  1. You can char the corn and jalapeño a couple of different ways. Put it directly over the flame on your stove, grill it, put it in a hot skillet over a fire or on your stove. For this, I used my skillet, and place the corn and jalapeños in the heated skillet, turning them until they had blackened marks on each side.
  2. When finished charring, carefully cut the corn from the cob. Remove the char from the jalapeño, slice it in half, clean out the seeds, and mince. (Divide it in half if you don’t want to use the whole pepper in the salsa, depending on your desired heat).
  3. Place the corn and the jalapeño in a medium bowl. Add the tomatoes, onion, olives, garlic, red or yellow pepper (or both), avocado, parsley, olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, salt and pepper.
  4. Stir to mix. Place in refrigerator until ready to use.
The Dressing
  1. Pour the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, ground mustard, sugar, Italian seasoning, dill weed, paprika, garlic, salt and pepper into a pint size mason jar. Cover. Shake until fully combined. Refrigerate until ready to use. (Shake again before pouring over sandwich)
The Garlic Toast
  1. Place the baguette halves under the broiler of your oven until golden brown. While the baguettes are under the broiler, mix the butter, garlic, and parsley together. When the baguettes are browned, remove from broiler, and spread with the garlic butter.
Assemble the Sandwich
  1. Place the garlicky baguette halves on the serving dish. Top with as much spring greens as you desire. Place the chicken slices over the spring greens. Divide the salsa between the two sandwiches. Sprinkle with chopped hard boiled eggs, and crumbled blue cheese. Drizzle with the dressing (as much as, or as little as you prefer).


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