These grilled sandwiches are upstate New York's best-kept secret. Marinated chicken cubes are skewered, grilled, then slid drectly onto soft white bread or buns.
Why This Recipe Works
None of the recipes we found for the grilled sandwiches known as chicken spiedies called for a marinating time shorter than 24 hours. When we first tried these versions, our Chicken Spiedies tasted pickled, and the chicken was grainy and chalky. Our solution was to shorten the marinating time to just half an hour. To help the marinade’s flavors penetrate the chicken, we pricked the raw meat all over with a fork before marinating. We also cut the chicken into small cubes to expose more surface area to the marinade. We removed the acid component from our marinade, as it was chemically “cooking" the chicken before it even hit the grill. However, tasters missed the tangy, bright flavor of the lemon juice and vinegar. So, we split the marinade into two bowls, adding the chicken to one and the lemon juice and vinegar to the other to make a “dressing" to dribble on the cooked meat later. The oil, salt, spices, and garlic in the marinade flavored the meat and improved its texture by acting as a brine, while the acidic dressing—drizzled over the chicken before serving—refreshed the marinade flavors.