“I manage to touch people’s lives with what I do and I want to share this with you.”
Chef Carl Casper – Chef the Movie
The Sandwich That Will Change Your World View – Behold the Cubano
If you haven’t seen the movie Chef with (and by!) Jon Favreau I strongly urge you to do so. It is brilliantly written, directed and acted, and the soundtrack! Well, let me assure you that it will make your favourites list in a heartbeat!
It’s a story of a man who becomes (hilariously and heart-wrenchingly) disillusioned with his career in the restaurant industry and takes to the road in a food truck making Cubano’s in a cross-country tour with his 10 year old son and best friend/sous chef played by John Leguizamo (LOVE!)
As I’m writing this I’m saying out loud (no kidding) to myself, “Do NOT review the entire movie, that is NOT why they are here.” It’s just such a great movie full of laughter, love, anger, frustration and pretty much everything in between. The cast is outstanding and… okay, I’ll stop now, well, almost…
The Cubano sandwich steals every single scene it’s in and once you make these for yourself you will understand why.
It starts with a mouthwateringly tempting Citrus Marinaded Pork Roast, some great crusty bread with TONS of personality, ham because any sandwich worth its weight has at least two meats, tart, crunchy pickles, gorgeous melty cheese and of course mustard. When these flavours merge as you grill, griddle or fry you will understand the meaning of pure sandwich devotion.
I happen to have a panini machine as there seems to be a decided LACK of minimalism around here when it comes to kitchen stuff, but your favourite frying pan will work just as well. Just be sure to weigh the sandwich down with something heavy during the cooking process.
It’s worth noting as well that as with anything in the kitchen, quality ingredients will guarantee a delectably satisfying outcome.
Movies about food and those who produce it have always inspired me in the kitchen, “Chef” is no exception. The movie is not just about the Cubano, but somehow it represents many of the same values; passion, commitment to an ideology, family and creative inspiration. Besides all that, just look at it!
Menu Suggestion: This is truly a meal in itself but if you’re looking for a little something to serve with it I might go with a small bowl of My Sittoo’s Perfect Chicken Soup or perhaps a lovely light side of an old fashioned classic like Cucumber Dill Salad
Wine Pairing: Before I give you this week’s wine pairing, I just want to point out that I got a “YUM!” My brother does not throw around words like this lightly… so yay me! “Yum! My mouth waters when I think of the multi-layered, smoky and salty pork flavors, the cheese, mustard and pickles. It makes me want a really mouth-filling wine that won’t be overwhelmed by the intensity of the flavors in the sandwich. You could go with an Oregon or NZ Pinot, but I think it wants a red Rhone wine or Shiraz.”
Enjoy & Namaste!
- Sourdough, Light Rye or another hearty bread that will stand up to grilling, thickly sliced
- Sliced ham, black forest is always a good choice (please not packaged, have your deli counter dude slice it for you) 2 slices per sandwich
- Havarti or Swiss cheese, 2-3 slices per sandwich (again, please not pre-packaged. Slimy=Ew)
- Citrus Roasted Pork Roast 2-3 slices per sandwich
- Mustard, I like a hot mustard for this sandwich but go with whatever your personal heat preference is, but good quality is essential. This sandwich is deserving of it!)
- Pickles, 3-4 slices per sandwich
- Roast the Citrus Marinaded Pork and allow to cool slightly before slicing.
- Lightly grill the inside of each bread slice.
- Build your sandwich to your own personal specifications. I like to spread the cheese out between each layer so that it results in a big melty delicious mess.
- Butter the outside of each side of the sandwich and grill until golden and oozing with cheesy perfection.
- Allow to cool for a few minutes before slicing.
- Enjoy as you witness your view of the world of sandwiches alters for the better forever.