Cuban Sandwich

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JodyP
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2011/03/02 09:14:04 (permalink)

Cuban Sandwich

We decided in keeping with our tropical theme to add a Cuban sandwich to our menu. Cubans are relatively simple (Ham, pork, cheese, pickle, mustard & butter) to make. The only requirement is that you need a smooth surface sandwich press. A few months back when we where looking at some other equipment for our trailer we saw several in the used restaurant supply stores. We decided to purchase one this week and of course none where to be found in any of the stores. The ones we did find looked terrible. We decided to order a new one from Web Restaurant Supply.
We are trying to build up a solid menu made up of components that can compliment each other or stand alone if needed. During the hot months our shaved ice and icy desserts will be all we sell. To expand the season into cooler weather months the Cuban sandwich and banana pudding will be added. Also there are some festivals that we would like to do that already have a shaved ice vendor. At these festivals we will do the Cuban and pudding. The sandwich press will also open up other menu items if we need them.
Anyone using a sandwich press with any ideas let us know.
#1

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    Dr of BBQ
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 12:43:16 (permalink)
    Jody,
    I have planed on a Cuban sandwich as an addition to my menu for some time just never got around to doing it. But I thought they could be done on a ribbed sandwich press? I do my hot dogs on my panini grill and I also use it for other sausages, but again it's ribbed, not just flat.
    I found this site http://icuban.com/food/cuban_sandwich.html
     
    and this quote
    "To make the traditional toasted and flattened Cuban sandwich, restaurants use a special press, called a plancha.What makes the Cuban sandwich great is that they are pressed between two hot plates on a device called a ‘plancha.’ You end up with a sandwich that is thin, hot, crispy, and oozing delicious melted cheese.
    Glenn Lindgren: No plancha at your place? No problem! We've had great success pressing them on a griddle with a bacon press, or heavy cast iron pan. Many home cooks use a brick wrapped in aluminum foil.
     
    Raúl Musibay, one of the owners said "Of course there is only one bread that works best, and that's Cuban bread. If you can't get your hands on any, a fresh loaf of French bread can be substituted, with less than ideal results :"
    I love the "with less than ideal results" LOL
    #2
    DawnT
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 12:46:40 (permalink)
    You seem to have this under control Jody. Are you looking for other ideas to do with the press?
    #3
    BackAlleyBurger
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 14:09:10 (permalink)
    i plan on a good cuban being my signature sandwich on the truck, but being in the sandhills of north carolina it might be hard to find good cuban bread....
     
    i never knew about the jimmy johns bread, i think we have one coming to the area soon, and we have a couple panera breads already..... time to do some comparison shopping and then go find a local bakery i reckon 
     
     
    im also planning a roasted tenderloin as well, so im going to try the cuban pork recipe and see how that goes
    post edited by GoBurgeR - 2011/03/02 14:10:16
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    BlackOak
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 14:09:27 (permalink)
    I like a good cuban sanwich, not to mention a good ruben.  I have a panni press I use at home and there are many sandwiches that can be made with a press, and always taste better IMO.  Using a press is a little time consuming IMO, so maybe just use a griddle with a weighted spatula might be a less expensive option to consider.
    #5
    DawnT
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 14:56:49 (permalink)
    Great to see you back Jack!
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    JodyP
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 15:15:21 (permalink)
    The word planhca basically means an iron. A plancha press is a flat / smooth side sandwich press. All of the original Cuban bakeries in south Florida offered a Cubano and grilled / flatten them in smooth side press. The main reason for purchasing a commercial press is for production at festivals. The one we are purchasing has a 10" x 14" cooking surface that will allow us to do several at a time. Cubano are usually about 8" long. We have a good supply of Cuban bread in Atlanta. Finding a decent pork to slice is a different matter.
     
    We are also looking at some other sandwich options that have a tropical theme.
    #7
    DawnT
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 16:04:16 (permalink)
    Why would you have any problem finding pork for the sandwiches in Atlanta Jody?
    #8
    JodyP
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 20:53:03 (permalink)
    We actually found it at two locations. One of the local supermarket’s deli does a Cuban and stocks the roasted pork roll but they won’t give me a break and at $7.69 / pound it is a bit pricey. We have also found a Latino Food distributor who stocks it but we have to purchase case quantities.  I am going to try one of the local Latino markets to see if they will give me a deal on the pork and also plantain chips. Worst case scenario we will roast our own pork like the Cuban bakeries used to do. Of course this gets a little tricky roasting the pork off site due to HD rules.
    We are starting a 3 day monthly market & Show this weekend and one of the other vendors is a local Bistro Café. Maybe we can work out a deal with them to purchase the roasted pork.
    #9
    BackAlleyBurger
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 21:16:05 (permalink)
    definitely go with roasting your own/having it roasted......DR's link up above has the recipe for an authentic marinade also, you cant go wrong going that route ...
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    BlackOak
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/02 23:08:37 (permalink)
    I have and tried that same recipe DR posted above.  Its so easy to do and taste great.  The pork shoulder I got was from Cosco, and I did the marinade for 2 days, then used the bbq grill in the back yard.  It was amazing.  Then I tried the oven method, and baked another for about 6 hours at 225 degrees, perfect!  I did the roasting pan on the stove top at low heat, it was great also.  The secret is in the marinade.  Make sure you poke alot of holes in the shoulder, then poke some more.  Can't hardly go wrong with any cooking method, if ya stick with the linked recipe.
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    DawnT
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/03 00:19:55 (permalink)
    If you're stuck with HD prep limitations, I guess you've got no choice then to go with rounds and slice them yourself. Down here in Miami, the ham and Lechon is usually sliced directly off the bone in most places, but sometimes sliced ham is used. There is a local meat packer called Morrison that manufactuers a decent substitute for the ham that some places use in a 12" wide round that's called Serrano ham. It's not the same thing as the Spanish Serrano, but a pressed product that contains a meat grain and marble. Bolo ham is also used as a substitute. I've never seen any restaurant or for that matter any Cuban sandwich made with the latin pork product. Morrison's pork brand is called El Toro and the only other one that I know of is sold by Publix supermarket in their Delis. I don't know who makes it, but the rounds look like Morrison's too.
    http://www.morrisonmeat.com/eltoro.asp
     
    If you go with roasting your own, let me know. Raul's recipe in the above link is great for classic Lechon, but not practical for foodservice and especially for sandwich meat.
    #12
    JodyP
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2011/03/03 06:22:43 (permalink)
    It was a Publix deli we talked with and you right about the Morrison El Toro Cooked Pork. It is carried by the wholesale Latino Food distributor here in Atlanta. (There are no more Cuban Food distributors in Atlanta) We may need to purchase a case and freeze what we don't need.  We are still hoping to find a local market that will order it for us in smaller quantities. We are not having any problems finding the hams.
    #13
    1923cubanbreadco
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2012/01/29 21:48:27 (permalink)

    Authentic Cuban bread now available in North Carolina.  Ybor City Cuban bread available now at 1923 Cuban bread company in Greensboro NC. Cases are being sold in 18" and 36" but will consider partial cases for local distribution. contact info available at www.1923CubanBreadCo.com
    #14
    BackAlleyBurger
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2012/01/31 07:42:54 (permalink)
    authentic cuban bread is and has been available right here in fayetteville for years now.... fresh baked daily, and no limit to amount you can purchase....
    the small bakery im using will custom size the loafs so i dont have to worry about dividing them up on the truck
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    MetroplexJim
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    Re:Cuban Sandwich 2012/01/31 12:01:21 (permalink)
    If any of you live near Arlington, VA try the Cuban Sandwich at the Caribbean Grill, NE corner of Lee Hwy and N. George Mason Drive.  It was the first I ever had and is still the best.
    #16
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