Tuscan Chicken Sandwiches

This is my “Old Faithful” or my go to recipe.  If you have ever had dinner at my house, then you have probably had these sandwiches.  They are easy and even the pickiest eaters love them.

Tuscan Chicken

1 1/4 lb. chicken breasts
2 garlic cloves chopped
1/2 cup roasted red bell peppers chopped (by them in the pickle section in a jar)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil

Put all these ingredients into a crock pot or slow cooker.  Cook on low setting for about 6 hours (depends on the heat of your slow cooker).  Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred using two forks, return chicken to slow cooker (do not get rid of the liquid in the slow cooker).

Pesto Mayo
3 tbsp. pesto
1/4 mayonnaise

To assemble the sandwiches, slice wedges of fresh focaccia (I will share my recipe below or you can use store bought).  Spread a generous amount of pesto mayo on one side of the bread, added the Tuscan Chicken (use tongs so that it is not too juicy and doesn’t make your sandwich soggy), top with lettuce, tomato slices and peperoncinis. 

Focaccia Bread
2 packages yeast
2/3 cup warm water
2 tbsp. sugar
2 cups warm water
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1/4 garlic powder
1/2 tsp. oregano
7 + cups of flour

In a small bowl combine 2/3 cup warm water, yeast and sugar.  Set aside and let the yeast activate (it will look foamy and bubbly).  In a Kitchenaid mixer (with the bread hook on), combine 2 cups warm water, olive oil, salt, garlic powder, oregano, and 2 cups flour.  Add the yeast mixture to the Kitchenaid bowl.  When combined completely add 2 cups of flour at a time until you have added 7 cups of flour.  Then continue adding 1/4 cup flour at a time until the dough forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.  Kneed the dough for a few more minutes with the Kitchenaid.  Put the dough in a greased bowl, cover and let it raise until in doubles.

When it has doubled in size, punch down the dough.

Divide the dough into two equal parts.  Prepare two cookie sheets with parchment paper and a tbsp. of olive oil spread on each.

Using your hands press the ball of dough out into a circle about 1 inch thick.  It does not need to look perfect.  You want it to be bumpy and rustic looking.

Using your finger tips, make small dents in the top of the bread.  Drizzle some olive oil on top and sprinkle some coarse sea salt and a few sprigs of fresh rosemary.  Bake in a 375F oven for 12-15 mins.  or until in it golden on top.

Slice the bread into wedges and prepare the sandwiches.

Enjoy!  Leave a comment if you make these sandwiches, I would like to know what you and your family think.