My latest cultural cooking interest is Cuban, another fascinating melting pot of flavors. Spanish with its Arabic accents, Creole, and many wonderful tropical flavors. I started off simple with Sandwich Cubano, which I believe is more of a Miami Cuban invention. I use Pork Tenderloin in my version. This sandwich is on my list of favorites, along with the Po' Boy, Muffuletta, and the Reuben.
1 10" French or Italian Loaf (I like one a little on the lighter side for this sandwich)
1-2 Tbsp Mojo Criollo (Recipe Below)
4 oz. Roasted Pork Tenderloin (Recipe Below) Thinly sliced against the grain
4 oz. Sliced Baked Ham
Thinly Sliced Pickle Slices
4 Slices Swiss or Gruyere Cheese
2 Tbsp Creole Mustard
1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter at Room Temperature
Cut the bread in half lengthwise. Spread the mustard on the inside of both sides of the bread. On the bottom half, place the tenderloin slices, then drizzle with the Mojo. Continue the assembly with 2 slices of cheese, Ham, the remaining cheese, the pickles, and the lid. Butter both sides of the outside of the sandwich with the unsalted butter.
The pressing method: If you have a sandwich press, press until both sides are golden brown and the sandwich is warmed through.
Or do it the way I did. I have a 12" Cast Iron skillet and a 10" Cast Iron Skillet. Place these into a 400 degree F oven for about 20 minutes. When they're good and hot, lay the sandwich in the Large skillet, and place the smaller skillet on top of the Cubano. Press it down and place the whole works in the oven for about 10 minutes. The sandwich should be golden brown, crispy on the outside and warmed through. Slice it in half lengthwise, from corner to corner. Enjoy!
Makes 1 Sandwich.
My Roasted Pork Tenderloin for the Sandwich Cubano
1 Pork Tenderloin, membrane removed
1 Tbsp Cumin
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Rub the tenderloin with the cumin and season liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 15-20 minutes, or until medium doneness. Let it rest, then chill until ready to serve (it's easier to slice thin when it's cold.)
This will make enough for few sandwiches.
1 Garlic Clove, Minced to a paste
1 Tbsp Fresh Orange Juice
1 Tbsp Fresh Lime Juice
2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
Whisk together the garlic paste and juices. Warm the oil and whisk into the Juice mixture until well blended. Season to taste with the salt.
This makes enough for 2-3 sandwiches.