I recently visited my sister in Columbus, which was much needed. I can’t remember the last time we actually spent a lot of quality time together, just the two of us.
We didn’t do a whole lot, but we managed to eat a lot of great food, spend too much money shopping, play cards against humanity, and binge watch the second season of Bates Motel.
We also watched the movie ‘Chef’ and were inspired to make a Cuban sandwich. If you haven’t seen the film, it’s on Netflix and it’s wonderful. Just a feel-good movie about food, which is right up my alley. Plus after you watch it, you too will want to make Cuban sandwiches. Trust me.
In fact, I suggest you make this recipe before watching the film – you’ll thank me for the idea later. You may also be tempted to scrap your current life plans and open a food truck instead.
SPICY CUBAN SANDWICH WITH FRIED PLANTAINS (4 servings)
Good quality bread (enough for four sandwiches)
Pulled pork (We bought premade pulled pork)
4 thick slices of smoked ham
3 tbs. yellow mustard
1 finely diced jalapeño
8 pieces of Swiss cheese
Sandwich style dill pickles
Oil for frying
3 tbs. mayo
1 tbs. sriracha
2 tsp. sugar
Juice of half a lime
In a small bowl, combine the jalapeño and mustard.
Spread some of the mustard on both halves of the bread. On the bottom slice of bread place one slice of ham. Continue to layer the ingredients, so next is the pulled pork, then pickles, then one or two slices of Swiss, and top it off with the other half of the bread.
Butter the outside of the sandwich and place on a hot pan.
If you happen to have a sandwich or Panini press, use that because it’ll be so much easier. If you’re like me, however, you’ll have to get creative. We placed the sandwich on a pan, then topped it with another hot pan, and then used a pot to press the pans together. This toasts the sandwich, melts the cheese, and presses all of the ingredients together like a Cuban should be made.
Peel the plantains and cut into 1 or 2 inch chunks. Set aside.
In a pan, add about a ½ inch to an inch of oil, and bring to a medium heat. If the oil gets too hot, the plantains will burn, and you don’t want that. So just adjust the heat as you go.
Place the plantain chunks in the oil and cook on each side for two minutes. Essentially, you want each chunk to be golden in color before removing them from the oil.
Once they are all golden in color, use two plates to smash the chunks flat.
Return them to the oil and continue to fry for another 3-5 minutes on each side.
**I didn’t time mine when I made them, I just let them fry until they were a deep golden color and crispy.
Remove them from the oil and place onto a paper towel lined plate, and season with salt, and lime juice.
Dipping Sauce for Plantains:
I made up a super simple lime sriracha mayo for the plantains. Just mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl and enjoy!
*Note: This sandwich pairs really well with blue Moon’s early seasonal peach beer. Super refreshing!
I'm Kirsten. Big time foodie, all around goofball, and freelance marketer.