Real Life. Real News. Real Voices.
Help us tell more of the stories that matter from voices that too often remain unheard.
Join HuffPost Plus
thinner_close_xCreated with Sketch.
THE BLOG

The Cuban Sandwich: An Epic Feast Between Bread

Yeah, you're gonna need an extra napkin.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

Rochelle Bilow, photo by Zach DeSart

2014-08-13-cubansandwichwithzucchinipickles940x600.jpg

This sandwich is more like an epic feast between two slices of bread: pickles, onion, carrot, celery, pepper jack cheese, soppressata, and -- oh -- did we mention the braised pork shoulder? Yeah, you're gonna need an extra napkin.

SEE MORE: Common Quick Pickling Mistakes

CUBAN SANDWICH WITH ZUCCHINI PICKLES
Park 121 makes its own zucchini pickles for these messy (in a good way) sandwiches; substitute with thinly sliced dill or bread-and-butter pickles if you like.

Ingredients
Zucchini Pickles:
  • 1 ½ cups apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 large zucchini, sliced into ⅛"-thick rounds, preferably on a mandoline
  • ½ large onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
Shredded Pork and Assembly:
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled, chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 sprig oregano
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 3-lb. skinless, boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 8 brioche buns, split
  • 8 ounces soppressata, thinly sliced
  • 8 ounces pepper Jack, thinly sliced

Preparation:

Zucchini Pickles: Bring vinegar, sugar, turmeric, mustard powder, and mustard seeds to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Let cool.

Toss zucchini, onion, and salt in a large bowl and let stand until zucchini releases moisture, 30-35 minutes. Pat zucchini and onion dry and transfer to a large jar. Pour pickling liquid over vegetables to submerge. Cover and chill at least 12 hours.

DO AHEAD: Zucchini can be pickled 4 days ahead. Keep chilled.

Shredded Pork and Assembly: Preheat oven to 300°. Combine onion, carrot, celery, oregano, rosemary, red pepper flakes, and broth in a Dutch oven or other large pot. Place pork on top of vegetables and drizzle with oil; season pork with salt and pepper. Cover and braise, turning pork occasionally, until pork is just falling apart, 3½-4 hours. Let cool.

Transfer pork to a large bowl, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid, and shred with a fork. Add cooking liquid as needed to moisten pork (you may not use all of it).

Meanwhile, increase oven temperature to 400°. Mix mayonnaise and mustard in a small bowl and set aside.

Place both halves of buns, cut side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Layer soppressata, pork, and cheese on bottom halves of buns and bake until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Top bottom halves of buns with pickles; spread top halves of buns with reserved mayonnaise mixture and form sandwiches.

DO AHEAD: Pork can be braised and shredded 3 days ahead. Cover and chill. Bring to room temperature before using.