It's rare that a movie speaks to your soul, and even rarer when it manages to hit on just about every aspect of it. The magnificent
Finally, this Sunday we got together to watch the Saints dominate the Packers and did our best to reenact the movie in our fanciest guayaberas (or at least I did).
Would our Cajun spins on the most perfect sandwich (It's grilled cheese stuffed with pork!) provide us with all the mojo we needed to enjoy the Saints game, or would we learn that it's best to stick with tradition?
|With enough prodding, I'm sure I could get Kevin to wear a guayabera. I mean he did wear nothing but Hawaiian shirts when we met.|
Cuban Bread (see below)
Mojo Pork (see below)
Ham (we used maple glazed honey ham)
Olive Salad (see below)
Mojo Spread (see below)
Remoulade (Previously seen here but with cilantro in place of parsley)
Kevin's mom's homemade pickles
Momma Kennair's fried shrimp
And most importantly- butter
- Start calculating the cost of a food truck.
- Decide it's far too expensive and that your friend's kitchen is "just as good".
- Determine which of these 3 awesome sandwiches deserves your mouth's immediate attention.
- Recreate the stack-up as shown. I recommend putting the spread you pick on both pieces of bread.
- Combine the two sides into proper sandwich form. Slather with butter.
- Grill in a buttered skillet over medium to medium-low heat while applying pressure with a weight. Flip and repeat. We used a heavy cast-iron cover to weigh ours down, but you could be fancy and use an actual sandwich press.
- Embrace your Cuban heritage in the most delicious way possible.
|The Traditional Stack-up: Bread, mojo pork, ham (3 slices), Swiss cheese (3-4 slices), pickles, and Dijon mustard.|
|This sandwich looked kind of like a sad duck following grilling and cutting.|
The Cuban Muffaletta
|The Cuban Muffaletta Stack-up: Bread, mojo pork, ham (2 slices), prosciutto, Havarti (4 slices), olive salad, and mojo spread.|
|I'm jealous of this picture because it has olive salad and I do not.|
The Cuban Po' Boy
|The Cuban Po' boy Stack-up: Bread, mojo pork, ham (2 slices), Havarti cheese (4 slices), fried shrimp (~10), pickles, and remoulade.|
|Despite being absurdly full, we found ourselves still picking out and eating all the shrimp.|
All the Recipes You'll Need
Recipe from Taste of Cuba
Servings: 4 loaves
Time: 3 hours (plus 1 day for starter)
3/4 tsp active dry yeast (1/3 envelope)
1/3 cup warm water
1/3 cup bread flour
4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast (2 envelopes)
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water, divided
4 tbsp vegetable shortening, room temp
1/2 batch starter
1 tbsp salt
4-5 cups bread flour
Kitchen twine, dampened
|The best and fanciest bread I have made yet. The slightly extra work involved with making a starter really pays off.|
- The day before you plan to make the bread, mix up the starter by dissolving the yeast in the warm water. Then mix in the flour until a thick paste forms. Cover with plastic wrap and "ripen" in the fridge for 12-24 hours (the longer the better).
- The day of, dissolve the yeast and sugar in 3 tbsp water in a large bowl. Allow 5-10 minutes for a foam to develop.
- Mix in the vegetable shortening, remaining water, salt, and 1/2 batch of the starter you made yesterday.
- Be kind of sad that you still have 1/2 a batch of starter that will never see its lifelong dreams of being bread come to fruition.
- Add flour in 1 cup at a time and mix well with the dough hook attachment on a stand mixer. Continue adding flour until you have a workable dough that is not sticky.
- Let the dough hook knead the dough for 6-8 minutes until elastic, or knead it yourself on a lightly floured surface.
- Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and let rise until it doubles (~ 45-60 minutes).
- Separate into 4 equally sized balls. Roll out each into a long tube (~8-12 inches) and place on baking sheets spaced at least 6 inches apart.
- Cover with damp paper towels and let rise for another hour until they double again.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Place dampened pieces of twine in cool patterns on top of the dough.
- Bake until tops are brown and it sounds hollow when tapped (25-30 minutes), rotating once during.
- Let cool on wire racks and remove the strings.
- Turn into ridiculous Cuban sandwiches.
Muffaletta Olive Salad
Adapted from Cooking for Two
Time: 5 minutes (plus a day)
3/4 cup pimento-stuffed olives
1/4-1/2 cup Kalamata olives
1/2 cup giardiniera
2 large pepperoncini
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
Black pepper to taste
Red chili flakes to taste
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
- Drain all the ingredients.
- Chop finely, mix in the pepper, red chili flakes, lemon juice and olive oil, and refrigerate overnight to let the flavors meld.
Adapted from The Cooking Channel
Time: 5 minutes
3 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
1/2 tsp salt
4 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lime
- Mix all the ingredients together until smooth like your sweet Cuban dance moves.
Adapted from Tyler Florence
Time: 1 hour
|How could that not turn out awesome?|
2-3 lbs boneless pork shoulder or tenderloin
Red chili flakes
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tbsp dried oregano
2 tbsp olive oil
5 cloves garlic, peeled and gently smashed
1 onion, sliced
1 cup orange juice
Juice of 1 lime
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 bay leaves
|So tender and juicy and delicious|
- Cut the pork into 4-5 pieces. Season well with salt, pepper, cumin, and oregano.
- Saute the garlic, onion, and chili flakes in olive oil in a pressure cooker on the brown setting until fragrant and soft
- Brown the pork on all sides.
- Add the orange juice, lime juice, chicken broth, bay leaves, and cloves. Cover and set the pressure cooker to high for 40 minutes.
- Follow all the safety precautions and wait for the pressure to be released before opening.
- Lightly pull the pork into large, juicy chunks.
Momma Kennair's Fried Shrimp
2 eggs, scrambled
Shrimp, peeled and deveined
Oil for frying
|One day I will properly honor your fried shrimp, Momma Kennair.|
- Heat oil to 375 F.
- Mix the eggs, milk, mustard and soy sauce into one bowl and the flour and spices into another.
- Dip the shrimp in the liquid mixture with one hand and into the powder mix with the other. Shake off excess batter.
- Fry until golden brown (~ 2 minutes). Transfer to a plate covered in paper towels to remove excess oil.
- You can store these in an oven set to 200 F for later if needed.