Chicken and Cheese Melty Goodness


Nice Dad is a dentist, but sometimes I'm convinced he should have been a chef.

It's funny because, according to him, he doesn't cook at all, and, to look at it, you might think that was true.  He doesn't make big, elaborate dishes; he's just really good at putting together simple things that taste good.  For example, he was grilling cabbage for years before I ever saw a Food Network chef do it.  

One night when we were visiting in May, we'd been on the road all day and were starving when we got home.  We quickly fed the very-over-tired Kid something fast and put him to bed while Nice Dad went to the store for the rest of us.  He came back with chicken breasts, sliced Havarti cheese, and materials for making veggie kabobs.

The chicken and veg went on the grill, and when we came downstairs from putting the Kid to sleep it was sitting under little foil tents on the counter.  He had put a slice of Havarti over each chicken breast to melt from the residual heat.

I'm actually not a terrible fan of chicken breasts.  Even cooked well, they're dry, bland in the center, and just a little unsatisfying.  But add the slice of cheese on top--a little fat and flavor to go with the protein--and they were delicious.

So much so that we've been making them at home this summer.  I like to sub boneless-skinless thighs for the breasts--they're about half the price and I don't mind a little dark meat.  We've been experimenting with many different kinds of cheese, but this week's homemade bordon (from our CSA--it's apparently similar to Neufchatel) has been the hands down winner.

The beautiful part of this is that, when you're putting a dollop of cheese on top, you really don't need to do anything to the chicken.  The thigh pictured above, for example, was only sprinkled with a little salt and pepper.  Then we popped it onto a bed of quinoa mixed with this peach salsa.  Again, it wasn't fancy, but it was good!