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Old 12-06-2005, 08:35 PM   #1
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Cuban sandwich

I ate at a little eatery in town for the first time today. I haven't a clue why I've never eaten there......its one of those places I kept saying I was going to try.........sadly its been open probably 1 1/2 years and today was the first time I went in.
I wanted to try something I'd never had before and decided on a Cuban Sandwich. It was on a homemade bread.....I think a sourdough but can't remember for sure. It had spicy pulled pork, spicy mustard, salami and tomato. It was so unbelieveably good. Has anyone ever had one of these. I would love to recreate one at home.
Oh and they served this awesome little homemade vegetable bread....it def. had sun dried tomatoes in it......it was wonderful too!
I'll def. be going back......the prices were a little high but what I had was well worth the price. I can't wait to try another sandwich or one of their specialty soups or salads next time.


Se non supporta il calore, vattene dalla cucina!
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Old 12-06-2005, 09:43 PM   #2
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Oh yeah, love them.

They traditionally have roast pork, cheese, ham and pickles with a little mustardy-type sauce and are pressed to melt the cheese.

Try it with a mojito! Rum, muddled mint and a bit of simple syrup

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Old 12-06-2005, 09:57 PM   #3
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You had a sandwich made by a Cuban! Not a Cuban sandwich!
I used to live in Tampa for some years and we have a large Cuban population there. One Cuban cafe called the Silver Spoon used to win the best Cuban sandwich award every year and it didn't have any vegatables in it nor pulled pork.
I've had the Cuban sandwich at the Columbia Restaurant also, and it was the same story.
I don't want to make this an argument just a different time-zone and a different city.
The first most common thing about a Cuban sandwich is that the bread is not sourdough. It is Cuban crispy bread. Next is that the sandwich is flattened in a sandwich press which makes it warm and crisp. The third thing is that it has lots of different cold cuts and cheeses.
I enjoyed them very much and there were numerous places in Tampa which made for an terrific lunch!
Let's see if we can find any other persons' experience in what a real authentic Cuban sandwich is.
I'll be wating to see...
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Old 12-06-2005, 10:28 PM   #4
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Okay...just went around on the web to see what I could see. This is a concensis recipe for a authentic Cuban Sandwich.

pan criollo (like a crusty french bread)
roast pork
sweet ham (jamon dulce)
Swiss cheese
pickles (optional)

Select a crusty bread which is soft inside. Put a dollop of mayonnaise and mustard on the bread and layer shaved or very thinly sliced ingredients inside. Butter the outer crust and press in a sizzling panini grill or sandwich press.

And I find that "optional" stuff like tomatoes, and anything really is at your discretion. So....what can I tell you. But press it! And butter it on the outsides too!
Enjoy and Vivala Cuba!
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Old 12-06-2005, 10:42 PM   #5
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Well now...here is the final word on the subject of Authentic Cuban Sandwiches.

Cuban sandwiches (sometimes called "a sandwich mixto", or "Cuban Pressed Sandwich") were common on cafeteria and restaurant menus in Cuba by the 1930s, and there is evidence of them as early as the turn of the century. The sandwiches were popular with workers in Cuba's sugar mills. Locals set up restaurants inside the mills and sold the sandwiches to the workers on their lunch breaks.
The traditional Cuban sandwich is made with Cuban bread. The bread is cut in half and buttered on both sides. Dill pickles, roast pork, ham, and Swiss cheese are added in layers. The pork is an essential ingredient and it needs to be slow roasted with Cuban spices, giving the pork a distinct garlic and citrus flavor. The sandwich is then lightly toasted in a sandwich press called a "plancha" until the bread is crisp and the cheese is melted. The press both heats and compresses the sandwich. A traditional Cuban sandwich does not include mustard, mayonnaise, lettuce, or tomato.
The same ingredients are also used on a smaller bread made from a sweeter egg dough and called a "medianoche" or "midnight" sandwich, so named because of the sandwich's popularity as a midnight snack.
In Tampa, they add Genoa salami to the Cuban sandwich, a variation that is unique to that area. In the early days of Ybor City, where the Cuban sandwich was first popularized in the United States, the only ethnic group as numerous as the Cubans were the Italians. Local sandwich makers catered to their Italian clientele by adding Genoa salami to the traditional Cuban sandwich.
In Key West, they serve a version of the Cuban Sandwich called a "Key West Mix." This variation includes mayonnaise, lettuce, and tomato.

I can't agree with this article more because when I was in Key West recently I went into a Cuban Sandwich shop on Roosevelt next the Choncy Joe's, and asked them if the sandwich had lettuce and tomato etc. And they said "We put whatever on it you want and like". The key is in the good Cuban bread and the hot press!
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Old 12-06-2005, 10:47 PM   #6
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OK look at the time and I'm so hungry I won't be able to sleep.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 12-06-2005, 10:49 PM   #7
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I agree with Pete. I've made some Cuban Sandwiches before, at the country club I work at. We used basic French Bread, cut in half, sliced ham, sliced roast pork, dill pickles, mustard, and Swiss Cheese. We buttered the outside of the bread, assembled them on a sheet pan, and placed the sandwich in a pannini machine.

I'll admit that it's not completely authentic. However, it's VERY tasty!
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Old 12-07-2005, 07:47 AM   #8
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Okay Okay Pete......I get the point I didn't have a real Cuban sandwich.....don't send out the Cuban sandwich making police please......

Well it may not have been a true cuban sandwich...........I won't let that spoil my experience because it was delicious.........I'll definetely be trying this when I'm traveling in different areas to see what variations they come up with. Isn't that what cookings all about.....taking an idea and making it your own.

Don't worry....I take no offense to your response at all .
Se non supporta il calore, vattene dalla cucina!
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Old 12-07-2005, 03:32 PM   #9
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We had a better Cuban sandwich in Cleveland than we had in Florida. We have a grill at home and now can make our own pressed sandwiches. We use crusty rolls.
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Old 12-08-2005, 01:07 PM   #10
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another one for cuban sammiches. i've had the standard sliced pork, sliced ham, queso blanco (white cheese), pickles, and a mustard based sauce, grill pressed on a buttered cuban roll (resembles a small football). i like mine with raw red onion and extra hot peppers.
and jenny's right as usual, have one with a large mojito.

as cuba is a fairly large country with various ethnic and social groups, so goes the variations in the additions/changes to the sandwich.

The past is gone it's all been said.
So here's to what the future brings,
I know tomorrow you'll find better things
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