Prep 45 mins
Cook 15 mins
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leave, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- fresh ground black pepper
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 4 (6 ounce) boneless skinless chicken breast halves
- 1 French baguette
- 1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1⁄4 cup half-and-half
- 1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed off and cut into 1-inch lengths (get pencil thin asparagus)
- 1 cup grated gruyere cheese
- 2 tablespoons plain breadcrumbs
- 4 slices black forest ham, chopped
- Preheat oven to 400°; preheat a big skillet over med-high heat with 2 tablespoons olive oil.
- Add in onion, thyme, and garlic; season with salt and pepper; cook, stirring frequently for 5-8 minutes until nice and brown.
- Remove onions from the pan; add in the remaining olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter.
- Add in the chicken; season with salt and pepper; cook until lightly browned 3-4 minutes on each side.
- While the chicken is cooking, split the French bread in half lengthwise, just shy of cutting it completely through.
- Dig out some of the insides of the bread and discard.
- Push the bread open and flatten out to keep it open.
- In a small bowl, combine the remaining 5 tablespoons butter, a little salt and pepper, and 3 tablespoons parsley; evenly spread mixture on the inside of the bread.
- Cut the buttered loaf into 4 portions, arrange on a cookie sheet; transfer to oven and bake about 5 minutes until golden brown.
- Remove toasted bread from oven, set aside on the cookie sheet, and switch the broiler on.
- Add the browned onions back to the skillet with the chicken; dust with the flour and continue to cook for 1 minute.
- Whisk in the white wine, stock, and half-and-half; bring to a simmer.
- Add in the asparagus and continue to cook 2-3 minutes, or until the asparagus are tender and the sauce is thick.
- In a small bowl, combine the grated cheese with the bread crumbs; toss to coat the cheese evenly with the breadcrumbs.
- Stir the remaining parsley and chopped ham into the chicken and sauce.
- Divide the creamy chicken into 4 portions in the pan, then transfer each portion to top the toasted bread.
- Sprinkle a little of the cheese on top of the chicken, then transfer the cookie sheet to the broiler to melt and brown the cheese.