Grilled Chicken Sandwich with Asian Pear and Bibimbap Mayonnaise
Jean-Georges kept sneaking spoonfuls of the sauce from my Bibimbap, so I finally had to give him my recipe. He transformed it into a delicious sandwich spread that is put to good use on this simple chicken sandwich that would be a hit in any lunchbox. When he made these with our neighbor Hugh Jackman, it was then decided that Hugh’s epitaph will be: “Generous with the mayonnaise.”
- 4 chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Coarse salt
- 3 tablespoons gochujang (red pepper paste)
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (see Note)
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds, crushed with a mortar and pestle
- 4 sesame seed buns, toasted
- 1/4 cup peeled Asian pear matchsticks
- 2 tablespoons micro shiso leaves (a JG touch) or 3 leaves each fresh basil and mint, thinly sliced (or lettuce is just fine too)
Preheat a grill to high or preheat a ridged cast iron grill pan over high heat. Rub the chicken with the oil and sprinkle evenly with salt. Grill until firm to the touch and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side, depending on the thickness. Set the chicken aside. Whisk together the red pepper paste, mayonnaise, sesame oil, vinegar, and sesame seeds. Spread both sides of the buns with the sauce. Put the chicken on the bottom halves of the buns, top with some pear and greens and sandwich with the top halves of the buns. Go to town.
Note: Jean-Georges likes to use Kewpie mayonnaise for this dish. Kewpie is a Japanese brand worth finding, but regular mayonnaise works just as well.