Soooo… it all started today when Tavis and I were talking about cutting out refined carbs for a week or two to reset our eating habits. We are not “no-carb” people but we find it useful to drop a few pounds if we spend a week or two getting all our carbs from fresh veggies (and a few from fresh fruit).
All we did was talk about it, I swear.
and the cravings began.
We never eat sandwiches, I don’t even keep bread in the house. But I was craving a delicious, carb filled, lots of cheese, filling, hot sandwich.
So I ran out the to the corner bakery and grabbed a fresh loaf of white bread. The perfect bread to make a Cuban sandwich. I would call it Cuban bread because it is very similar, but since we live in Puerto Rico I think that would be misplaced.
Tavis was anticipating the authentic cuban sandwiches and was waiting for me when I go home, hence this lovely candid shot of me walking up to the house with the hot out of the oven, forbidden white bread…
Note the sand and mud covered jeep in the background, we might have gone to the beach last night for a bonfire and grill out. Here in Puerto Rico that requites a 4×4 and forging through a almost 3 feet of water left by the recent rain… follow us on Instagram to keep up on that aspect of our craziness.
So if you aren’t on any restrictive diets (mine doesn’t start until tomorrow, remember?) here is what you will need to make your own authentic REAL Cuban sandwich:
A loaf of cuban bread, or other crusty white bread similar to what is pictured.
Dill pickle slices
Cuban style pork roast
Sliced deli ham
Sliced swiss cheese
There is a lot of debate as to what really goes into the cuban sandwich recipe but, as a girl who grew up in South Florida, with the most vibrant cuban communities located in the States at my finger tips, I have had many
debates lectures conversations as to what is really in a Cuban sandwich. The consensus among my Cuban friends is that it has exactly the ingredients listed above.
No more, no less.
Pull out your panini press if you have one or get your skillet out and a nice big spatula because you need to pre heat them. At the corner sandwich shops back home in Florida, they all used a press that was flat and didn’t leave the grill marks but this girl is on a budget so I just use the panini press that I aquired when I married Tavis. I don’t think my Cuban friends would dock me too many points for grill lines as long as I got the ingredients right. 😉
Slice open that warm, forbidden bread and savor the smell, knowing that you will eradicate it from the house tomorrow, lest you be temped…
Spread a good amount of yellow mustard onto the bread.
both sides if you really like mustard. I won’t judge.
Put a generous amount of pickles on the mustard.
Top with a huge thick slice of swiss cheese.
Now here comes the good stuff.
Heat up your left over Cuban Pork Roast. If you don’t have a good recipe, I will be sharing mine here in a few days (updated to include link to pork roast recipe). It can be sliced pork roast or pulled like mine. I stopped slicing mine a few years back because with my recipe the pork is SOOOO juicy and tender that it falls apart anyway. I stopped fighting and just embraced it.
Put a generous amount of pork on top of the cheese.
**NOTE** Onions are NOT part of the official Cuban pork sandwich recipe. My pork roast just happened to have onions cooked with it. I was not about to take the time to pick the onions out of the pork so they would not be in the picture. Don’t judge, just go with it… My Cuban friends might dock points for this move but I won’t tell them if you don’t.
Top the pork roast with sliced ham.
Then top with another thick slice of swiss cheese.
I have a philosophy in cooking, well I guess in life in general.
“Bacon and butter make everything better”
We could add beer to that list as well but it doesn’t have the same ring…
So here comes the butter, don’t think, just go with it.
You know you want to.
Cover your panini press or skillet with butter and have it warmed up to medium heat. My press just has an on/off setting so it takes the guess work out of the temperature.
I added butter to the top and bottom of the press but it dripped off the top so I just added it to the top of the sandwich itself.
Get it centered and then press it down, fairly hard for the first 45 seconds to a minute. If you are using a skillet, butter up your pan and press the sandwich down with a large spatula or the bottom side of a skillet or pot. Flip the sandwich after about 2-3 minutes and add more butter when you flip it over.
If you are using a press, add butter as needed… or if you are like me, “as wanted” just because I. love. butter. No need to flip it over on the press because both the top and bottom are heated.
Serve with a ice cold coke because it tastes delicious and on days that you are carb loading… why stop with just a sandwich 😉