Summertime grilling is one of my favorite times of the season. When we used to live in Michigan, it felt extra special after long periods of bad weather. Though I was one of the crazy people who would clear a path in the snow to the grill, dust off the layer of snow and fire it up in 20-degree evenings.
Now that we are in the land of no seasons – only summer – grilling outside in the summer sun feels just like any other day of the year. Trust me, I’m not complaining. Perhaps just bragging a bit.
For those still in places with seasons, a summer day grilling is a day filled with joy. Grilling is so easy. Heat. Place some food on it. Close the lid. Open a beer. Drink beer. Flip the food. Repeat. Serve.
Life is good with a grill.
Life is also really good if you get a chance to try jamón ibérico de bellota. It’s a Spanish version of Prosciutto that has the most amazing flavor, as it should. This delicacy ran $149/lb at my local market. I should note you don’t need this. A good imported prosciutto works just fine for this recipe.
The only reason I ended up buying a couple slices of jamón ibérico de bellota (2 thin slices came to $7) was due to a conversation with the deli guy. He ask which Prosciutto do you want? I looked at a couple as he rattled off several common types and then added or you can go with the $149/lb one. What makes this particular meat special is that it comes from free-range pigs that roam the oak forest border of Spain and Portugal eating a diet of acorns then the meat is cured for 3 years.
Still $149 a pound?! Well I only need 2 thins slices so I said let’s do that. That sounds insane. He laughed and cut me a thin slice to try it first. Bonus! Free crazy expensive jamón ibérico de bellota!
It was great like when you drink a high-quality pinot noir. Sure the $20 bottle is great, but a $60 bottle shows off by being brilliant from the first sip to the end. That’s kind of what this “prosciutto” reminded me of. It was brilliant from the first to last bite.
I doubt I’ll buy it regularly, but I might again for a pasta dish that uses a little to make the dish extra special.
The best moment with the jamón ibérico de bellota is when my wife tried it and said, “it tastes like bacon. I like it.”
Grilled Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breasts
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
8 paper-thin slices Prosciutto
4 slices Fontina cheese
1 medium sized tomato
Salt and pepper to taste
Butterfly the chicken breasts by cutting each one almost in half. Fold the chicken breast out covering with cellophane and pound with a meat mallet to make flat. Salt and pepper the chicken and then add a slice of Fontina cheese and thinly sliced tomato. Fold over and secure with toothpicks.
Place each wrapped breast on the grill and cook for about 8 minutes per side to get a nice brown sear. Remove from grill and then wrap each breast with two slices of prosciutto. Return to grill and heat for about 2 minutes then turn over to cook the other side another 2 minutes to make the prosciutto crispy being careful not to burn.
Remove from heat and serve with your favorite sides.