Crispy Chicken and Parma Ham Ciabatta

This was my absolute favourite sandwich growing up. It’s inspired by Carluccio’s chicken and pancetta ciabatta and is loaded with crispy crumbed chicken, parma ham, tomatoes, rocket and black pepper mayo. It requires a little more effort than your average sandwich but I promise you that it’s worth it!

  • Author: zenak
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


  • 2 large chicken breasts
  • 60 g plain flour
  • 2 small eggs
  • 100 g breadcrumbs
  • olive oil
  • 8 slices of parma ham
  • 4 individual ciabatta loaves
  • 2 large beefsteak tomatoes
  • 120 g mayonnaise
  • 80 g rocket leaves


  1. Butterfly the chicken breasts, cutting all the way through to make two thin pieces. Cover with cling film and pound to an even thickness. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.
  2. Place the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs in 3 separate bowls. Season the flour with salt and pepper and mix to incorporate, then season the eggs with salt and pepper and beat to incorporate.
  3. Dredge 1 piece of chicken in the seasoned flour, turning to coat. Shake off any excess then dip it in the egg, again turning to coat. Let the excess drip back into the bowl then dredge the chicken in the breadcrumbs, pressing firmly to help them adhere and ensuring that there aren’t any bare spots. Gently shake off any excess then transfer the chicken to a large plate or baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
  4. Heat your grill to high.
  5. Coat the bottom of a large frying pan with olive oil and heat over medium heat until nice and hot. Working in 2 batches, cook the chicken, turning once, until cooked through and golden and crispy on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  6. Discard the oil at the bottom of the frying pan and wipe out any fallen crumbs. Add a splash of olive oil to the pan and heat over high heat. Working in multiple batches, fry the pancetta until crisp on both sides then transfer to a plate.
  7. Halve the ciabatta rolls and toast under the grill. Slice the tomatoes. Place the mayo in a bowl, add lots and lots of black pepper and mix to combine.
  8. To assemble, spread a quarter of the mayo on both sides of one sandwich and top with a quarter of the rocket. Add a quarter of the tomatoes then top with 1 chicken fillet and 2 slices of parma ham. Finish with the top of the ciabatta. Repeat with the remaining ciabattas then tuck in and enjoy!

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