Although it is still a couple weeks away from “Sandwich Week” in the Vannoni household, I have been craving a Cuban Sandwich or Cubano. We went on a family vacation a couple weeks ago and there were Cubanos on several of the menus but, stupidly, I never ordered one. So now, I need to satisfy my craving.
Preparing this sandwich is more like gathering ingredients than cooking. I get the pork from a great BBQ place (Sugarfire), I get the rolls from a local bakery (Breadsmith) and I usually get the ham from the deli counter at my local grocery store (Dierbergs).
Now, on this occasion I happen to have thinly sliced ham that I froze the last time I baked a bone-in ham. It kicks it up a notch but your sandwich will still be delicious with regular deli ham (might I recommend Bavarian or Off-the-Bone). And my roll is not the traditional Cuban Bread Roll; I don’t know where to find one in St. Louis. If anyone out there does, please fill me in. If you can’t find any type of Cuban bread you can use a hoagie, Ciabatta or even a hamburger bun; just not a baguette. Now, let’s start assembling…
- 2 Cuban Bread Rolls
- 1/2 lb Pulled Pork
- 4 thinly sliced pieces of Ham
- 4 slices of Swiss Cheese
- Dill Pickles
- Yellow Mustard
- Slice your rolls in half.
- Spread a thin layer of mustard on each half of the bread.
- On the bottom half of each roll layer a slice of Swiss cheese, half of the pulled pork, 2 slices of ham, pickles and another slice of Swiss. Put the top layer of bread on your sandwich.
- If you have a panini press, great, this is a chance to use it. If not, check out How to Fake A Panini Press. The bread I use doesn't need to be buttered on the outside before it is grilled, yours might, especially it is a bit soft on the outside. Grill your sandwich on medium heat for about 5 minutes per side or until sandwich is hot and the cheese is nice and melty.
- Take your sandwich out of the pan and let it rest for a minute or so. Then, I like to slice ours in half because the rolls are quite big but that is just my preference.
I think fried plantains or plantain chips would be the traditional side here but I have not tackled that one yet. I served with plain kettle cooked potato chips and some fresh pineapple and they were delicious together.
My friend Caron let me know you can buy Plantain Chips at Trader Joe’s for $1.99. Thanks Caron! She also recommends not eating the entire bag in one sitting… so… good luck with that one.