Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Grilled Chicken Breasts with Spanish Ham, Cheese, and Pimentón Butter and Grilled Asparagus Rafts

  • Active Prep: 20 minutes
  • Grill Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes

Time to up your grilling game! We start with grilled asparagus rafts brushed with BUSH’S® Bourbon and Brown Sugar Grillin’ Beans® sauce. Then comes the star of the show: stuffed chicken with serrano ham and manchego cheese. They’re generously seasoned with salt and pepper, basted with pimentón butter, and grilled until beautifully browned. Serve with a side of BUSH’S® Grillin’ Beans®, and you’ve got a meal prepared like a professional. For more on BUSH’S® BBQ Bootcamp™, follow along all summer on BUSH’S® Facebook page.

  • Yield: Serves 4

For the asparagus:

  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed (thicker stalks work best)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil or olive oil
  • 1 can (22 ounces) BUSH’S Bourbon and Brown Sugar Grillin’ Beans®, 2 tablespoons sauce
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • You’ll also need: toothpicks or small bamboo skewers
  • Optional asparagus seasoning: favorite barbecue rub, to taste

For the chicken:

  • 4 each (8 ounces) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced serrano ham, cut into matchstick slivers
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced manchego cheese, cut into matchstick slivers
  • coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

For the pimentón butter:

  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 tablespoon pimentón (Spanish smoked paprika)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives for serving
  • You’ll also need: knotted toothpicks or bamboo skewers

FOR THE ASPARAGUS: Step 1: Set up well-oiled grill for direct grilling and preheat to high.

Step 2: Lay 4 to 5 asparagus stalks side-by-side and pin crosswise with toothpicks or skewers at top and bottom to form rafts.

Step 3: Brush each raft with sesame oil and two tablespoons BUSH’S Bourbon and Brown Sugar Grillin’ Beans sauce, then sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Step 4: Arrange asparagus rafts on grate and grill until browned on both sides, about 2-3 minutes per side.

Step 5: Using tongs, remove asparagus rafts and place on plate. Serve immediately (remove and discard toothpicks or skewers).

Step 6: Serve with remaining BUSH’S Bourbon and Brown Sugar Grillin’ Beans on side.

FOR THE CHICKEN: Step 1: Cut deep pocket in side of each chicken breast.

Step 2: Fill pocket with ham and cheese and pin pocket shut with oiled toothpick.

Step 3: Generously season outside of chicken breast on both sides with salt and pepper.

Step 4: Melt butter in small saucepan over medium heat on grill’s side burner.

Step 5: Remove melted butter from heat and add pimentón, salt and pepper and keep warm.

Step 6: Set up well-oiled grill for direct grilling and preheat to high.

Step 7: Arrange chicken breasts on grill running diagonal to bars of grate.

Step 8: Grill until browned on both sides and cooked through until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F, giving each breast a quarter turn after 2 minutes to lay on a crosshatch of grill marks.

Step 9: Start basting chicken breasts with pimentón butter after 2 minutes and continue basting.

Step 10: Transfer chicken breasts to platter.

Step 11: Drizzle remaining pimentón butter over chicken breasts and sprinkle with chopped chives.