i hesitate to concur with the author of this recipe and call these “cubanos.” really they’re not. no mustard, no cheese, no pickles etc. but i will agree that these were very good. i love a good mix of spices on tender meat and paired with warmed, fluffy pitas – droolworthy, totally. plus this dish earned me a “this is mothereffing delicious” from erik so great success all around!
recipe adapted from the Top Chef Cookbook
small pork roast
ground ginger or fresh grated ginger
flat pitas or pita pockets
1 1/2 cups red wine vinegar
scant 1/4 cup sugar
1/2 Tablespoon fennel seed
1-2 medium sized carrots, julienned
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno, sliced
recipe loosely adapted from Maria Helm Sinskey in the “Family Meals” cookbook
1/4 to 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 big carrot, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon butter
flat leaf parsley, chopped finely
fresh thyme, pulled off their stems
salt and pepper
the day before (or the morning even i suppose), make the pickled veg: in a saucepan, heat the vinegar, sugar, fennel seed, and about 1 1/2 cups water and bring to a boil. cook until the sugar dissolves. put the carrots, onion and chiles in a bowl. pour the hot vinegar mixture in. cover and let it steam for 20 minutes or so. pour all but 1 cup of the liquid out. keep the veg in the fridge until you’re ready to serve it.
for the pork: heat your oven to 325. rub the pork with some olive oil. season it with the salt, pepper, cumin, ginger, cayenne, coriander, cloves, and garlic powder. place in a roasting pan. pop it in the oven and cook it on low heat for about 5-6 hours, or until it’s very tender. let it cool a bit then shred it up.
for the pilaf: heat the olive oil and butter in a saucepan. stir in the onion, celery, and carrots. cook until the veg slightly softens. stir in the garlic and rice. toast lightly. stir in the parsley, thyme. add in enough chicken stock to barely cover the rice. salt and pepper all this. bring to a boil then lower the heat, cover, and simmer until the liquid is all soaked up and the rice is done. fluff with a fork before serving.
warm the pitas. serve the shredded pork on them topped with the pickled veg. serve with rice pilaf.