Let's Dish With Linda Lou

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Grilled Chicken Caprese Tarts

on September 26, 2013

Grilled Chicken Caprese Tarts

My grandmother’s Caprese salad was the inspiration for my Grilled Chicken Caprese Tarts. She used fresh tomatoes, basil, mozzarella, and a drizzle balsamic vinegar. I’m going to take that idea one step further.

I’ve found the grocery store offers a lot of great products that make life in the kitchen easy and fun. Puff Pastry is definitely one and a staple in my house. Puff Pastry is available in the frozen section of the grocery store. If you plan on using Puff Pastry for any recipe, transfer the box to the refrigerator the night before. The dough needs to stay cold until your ready to use it. All you need to do after that is to follow the directions on the box.


Local Grown Florida Heirloom Tomatoes



Sweet Basil (2)

Puff Pastry (2)



Grilled Chicken Caprese Tarts


Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 to 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: four 6-inch plates, rolling pin, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, indoor grill pan, parchment paper, paring knife, large mixing bowl

all-purpose flour
1 sheet of Puff Pastry, cut into 4 6-inch circles, 1/4-inch thick
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, *butterflied (yielding 4 chicken cutlets)
3 vine ripe tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1/2 a red onion, thinly sliced into half-moons
1 cup of fresh basil leaves
4 tablespoons of your favorite store-bought fresh-made basil pesto (usually found in the refrigerated section)
1 8-ounce package of fresh mozzarella, sliced 1/4-inch thick
8 tablespoons of good olive oil
2 tablespoons of kosher salt, to season all 4 tarts
2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper, to season all 4 tarts
Good balsamic vinegar, to drizzle before serving (optional)

Directions For Chicken:
Start, by *butterflying the two chicken breasts. Once you’ve butterflied the chicken breasts, separate them down the center. This will give you four, 1/2-inch thick, chicken cutlets.

Lay the four chicken cutlets out onto a plastic cutting board. Pat dry with a paper towel. Drizzle both sides with olive oil (1 teaspoon of olive oil per side) and lightly sprinkle both sides with Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper.

Preheat an indoor grill pan on high heat for 2 to 3 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-high. Transfer the chicken cutlets onto the grill pan in a single layer, evenly spaced apart.

Grill for 4 minutes per side. Transfer the grilled chicken to a large platter, cover with foil to keep warm.

Preheat oven to 400-degrees F.

Line 2 rimmed baking sheet pans with parchment paper.
While the chicken is grilling, dust a flat surface with all-purpose flour. Roll out one sheet of Puff Pastry to a 1/4-inch thick. Using a 6-inch plate and a paring knife, cut out 4 circles.  Place two pastry circles on each rimmed baking sheet pan.

Using the paring knife again, score a margin a 1/4-inch from the outside of each circle. This will allow the outside of the circles to puff up slightly and give a tart-like look to the pastry. Take a fork and prick the inside of the circles. This will allow steam to escape and the center of the pastry circles will lay flat.

Arrange the sliced tomatoes, sliced red onion, and mozzarella slices in the center of each tart. Sprinkle Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper over each tart. Drizzle each tart with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

Brush the outer rims with *egg wash. Follow the cooking instructions on the Puff Pastry box. (usually bakes for 15 minutes).

While tarts are baking, thinly slice the chicken on the bias. Transfer the sliced chicken to a mixing bowl. Add the basil pesto and toss to combine.

Once the tarts come out of the oven, divide evenly adding the sliced pesto marinated chicken over the top of each tart. The heat of the tarts will warm up the basil and it will smell so good.  Finally, add a few freshly torn basil leaves over the top. There you have it my Grilled Chicken Caprese Tarts. Serve hot or at room temperature.

This recipe could easily be a vegetarian dish.

*Egg Wash: 1 beaten egg whisked together with one tablespoon of water or milk.

*Butterflying Chicken Breasts. Place the chicken breast on a plastic cutting board and, with your hand flat on top of it, use a sharp knife to slice into one side of the breast, starting at the thicker end and ending at the thin point. Open out the breast so it resembles a butterfly. If you choose to have thinner chicken breasts (cutlets) continue to cut where the breast meets at the center, (an open book-like piece of chicken), slice down the center giving you two equal breast pieces, 1/2-inch thick.


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