Balsamic Rosemary Chicken Skewers and Cipollini Onions
Balsamic Rosemary Chicken Skewers and Cipollini Onions….is there anything better than that? Balsamic acts as a tenderizer so you get this really tender, flavorful chicken that turns a nice golden brown color on the grill or in the skillet. My kids actually LOVE this recipe for chicken. I added the Cipollini onions because they are small and could be easily skewered to make a really cute presentation of chicken and onions. Same with the lemon slices. Your guests can remove the lemon from the skewer and squeeze over the chicken when it’s on the plate But, if you didn’t want to go to that much effort on presentation….and hey I don’t blame you….then just keep the chicken breasts whole and put a sprig of rosemary in it and serve the onions on the side. All good.
The end of summer is fast approaching and that just makes me want to grill anything and everything I can. Because in two months, even in California, I could be standing in the kitchen looking out at the lonely grill through a sheet of rain and wishing I’d taken advantage of the hot, dry summer. This Balsamic Rosemary Chicken recipe is an ode to summer and the memories that carry us through until next year.
I happen to have a ton of rosemary growing in my yard so I just used that and stripped them down to about 3 inch sprigs with mostly just the stem in tact. I tried to find really sturdy pieces of rosemary because that makes them easier to skewer and more durable on the plate. The kind you buy in the grocery store tends to be pretty sturdy. You can pretty much cut those in half and get 2 skewers per sprig.
The onions get a little slippery, especially once roasted. I like to blanch mine first to get the skin off. It just makes it easier. Then you roast them in the balsamic and honey and rosemary marinade until they are tender and golden. I like to turn mine at least once to ensure both sides are getting that color from the heat and the balsamic combination. When you are actually putting them on the skewer they may fall apart a little bit but I just shoved them on there. It didn’t matter if they were perfectly intact. They will be followed up by a lemon slice and that really keeps the whole thing in place.
Enjoy these Balsamic Rosemary Chicken Skewers and Cipollini Onions anytime of the year – definitely try them once before summer is up!
Here’s the play by play starting with the ingredients:
For the chicken
Halve the first lemon, smash and roughly chop the garlic, and set aside your fresh rosemary sprigs. Then rinse and dry the chicken and set aside.
Add the lemons, garlic and rosemary to a gallon-sized zip lock bag.
Then add in the chicken…
Season well with salt and pepper
Add about 3 Tablespoons of the honey
Then the 1/4 cup of the balsamic vinegar
Then 3 Tablespoons of olive oil and seal the bag.
Kind of mix it around gently to get all the good flavors combined and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to overnight.
For the onions
Bring a pot of water to a gentle boil and add the onion and blanch for 2-3 minutes. Preheat oven to 350
Drain the onions and set aside to cool until able to work with them.
Meanwhile make the marinade with the remaining 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 1 Tablespoon honey, 1 Tablespoon olive oil, some of the fresh rosemary chopped and a little salt and pepper.
When the onions are cooled then peel them and add them to the marinade.
Place onions and marinade in an oven proof pan and roast for 25-30 or until golden brown.
Roasted onions should be tender but not mushy and a little golden brown.
Cool, and chop in half.
Cook the chicken
Get that grill or grill pan ready! Drain the chicken from the marinade and set aside. Toss the marinade.
Grill the chicken until just done or internal temp is about 155. Set aside and tent the chicken. It will continue to cook while resting and reach 160.
Cut the chicken into about 1/2 inch cubes and slice and quarter the last lemon. Set all the ingredients aside and get the rosemary skewers ready.
Strip the rosemary skewers so that only about 1/4 inch of the rosemary remains and most of it is the stem.
Assemble by adding the chicken to the sprig, then the onion, then a quarter of a lemon and set on the platter. Continue until they are all done. Serve on it’s own or with a salad in the center of the platter such as the tomato and basil salad featured in the final picture.
- 1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- 7 oz Cipollini Onions
- 1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons good quality Baslamic Vinegar, divided
- 5-6 full sprigs fresh rosemary, plus approximatly 18 (3-inch) sprigs if using for skewers
- 2 lemons
- 4 cloves garlic
- 4 Tablespoons honey, divided
- 4 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
- salt and pepper
- Cut and slice the first lemon into quarters. Roughly chop the garlic. Rinse and pat dry the chicken.
- Add the lemons, garlic and rosemary to a resealable bag or tupperware and add in the chicken. Season well with salt and pepper then add in the 2 Tablespoons of honey, 1/4 cup of baslamic vinegar, and the 2 tablespoons of oil. Shake gently to combine and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to overnight.
- Bring a pot of water to a gentle boil and add in the Cipollini onions. Blanch for 2-3 minutes and drain. Preaheat oven to 350 degrees. Cool the onions and prepare the marinade by adding in the remaining 2 Tablespoons vingar, 1 Tablespoon honey, 1 Tablespoon oil, salt, pepper and a little rosemary then mix to combine
- Peel the onions and add to the marinade and coat well. Add the onions and marinade to a roasting pan and roast for 25-30 minutes. Cool and set aside then cut in half.
- Preheat a grill or grill pan. Remove the chicken from the marinade. Cook chicken until internal temp reaches 155 degrees and then tent and let rest until chicken reaches 160.
- Cut the chicken into 1/2 inch cubes, slice and quarter the last onion and prepare the rosemary sprig skewers (if using)
- Assemble the chicken skewers by adding first the chicken, then the onion, then a lemon slice. Continue until all the ingredients are gone. Place on a platter and serve