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The Cubano Sandwich

I love the movie, Chef, with Jon Favreau. Sometimes on my day off I’ll make myself a late breakfast, pour a glass of wine, and watch it in my pajamas.

It often gives me inspiration to cook something for my Lovely Bride, but recently I have been fixated on the Cubano sandwich.

pressed cuban sandwichI have been roasting a Pork Butt every other week for the past two months, in search of the perfect marinade and construction.

I’ve tried different mustards, pickles, hams, etc. The following recipe is the one that I like the best.

For the sandwich itself you will need:

  • Ciabatta Bread
  • Quality Swiss Cheese, sliced fairly thin, two slices per sandwich
  • Black Forest Ham, from the Deli counter, again, sliced fairly thin, three slices per sandwich
  • Dill Pickles, preferably Vlasic Ovals
  • A panini press

I get all of this at the Deli counter, because I can get just enough for the number of sandwiches that I am going to make. We are going to prepare the Pork Shoulder Butt ourselves!

The Marinade

Start with a Pork Butt of at least three pounds and do your prep the day before you plan on cooking it. You will also need:

  • 2 quarts, less 8 ounces, of Orange Juice (we’re going to use the 8 oz for the Rub)
  • 1 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/4 Cup Soy Sauce
  • 1 Lime, quartered and squeezed into the marinade
  • 1 Navel Orange, quartered and squeezed into the marinade
  • 6 cloves of Garlic, put thru a Garlic Press
  • 1/2 large yellow Onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Red Pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of Kosher Salt

Mix all of this in a bowl large enough to contain all of the liquid and the Pork Butt. Put the pork in the marinade, cover with plastic wrap, and put it in the fridge for 12 hours.

The Rub

In a sauce pan, add the 8 oz of Orange Juice over medium-high heat.


  • 1/2 teaspoon dry Cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground Black Pepper
  • 1/4 Cup finely chopped yellow Onion

Reduce to 1/2 volume. Add 1 Cup of Gulden’s Spicy Brown Mustard and 1/4 Cup of Bread & Butter Pickle Juice. Bring back to a simmer, reduce heat and let it reduce until it is thick and creamy. Add Salt to taste. Remove from heat and cool down. Store in the fridge until you are ready to roast the Pork Butt.

The Roast

Take the Pork Butt out of the marinade and put it in a roasting pan on the counter one hour before cooking. Pre-heat your oven to 275 degrees. Pour the Rub over the pork and smear it all over, top, bottom, sides, all over. Finish with the Pork Butt in the pan with the fatty side up.

Roast the pork for 3 hours, or until the temperature in the center is 130 degrees. Remove from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes.

Cut some slices of the Butt, about 1/4 inch thick, two per sandwich. The rest will hold in the fridge for a week, you can cut more for sandwiches later, too!

The Sandwich

Spread French’s Yellow Mustard on one side of the Ciabatta. Use a little more than you think you should, you want it thick, there is a lot of meat on this bad boy! This is the bottom of the sandwich. Next, lay down the Black Forest Ham, then the roast pork slices, followed by the Swiss cheese and finally the pickles on top. Cover with the other half of the Ciabatta and press until the cheese starts oozing out the sides.