The Cubano

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The missuz surprized me with a private movie screening on my birthday. The movie was Chef, an inspiring gastro-roadmovie of sorts. 2 minutes 30 second in, I swore that I will always cook for my family and we will never order takeout ever again. 🙂

One dish especially got my attention, and that was the Cubano Sandwich, which I set out to make right the next day. Luckily, I found this recipe, which sounded authentic enough for me. I have never tasted a cubano in my life, but what I got as a result was just as good as I imagined based on the movie.

What you will need:

For the marinated pork

  • 200 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • a large bunch of coriander, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 200 ml fresh orange juice
  • 120 ml fresh lime juice
  • a small bunch of mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • salt and pepper 1 teaspoon each
  • 500 g boneless pork shoulder in one piece

For the sandwich:

  • the marinated pork from above
  • 12 thin slices of boiled ham
  • 3 medium ciabattas split lengthwise
  • 6 generous slices of swiss cheese
  • lengthwise sliced pickles to taste
  • yellow mustard for brusing
  • softened butter for brushing

How to make it:

  1. Best to start with marinating the pork one day before you are actually making the sandwich. In a bowl, whisk together all the marinade ingredients except the salt and the pepper
  2. Whisk in the salt and the pepper, and transfer the marinade in a large resealable plastic bag
  3. Place the pork in the plastic bag
  4. Seal the bag and turn to coat, refrigerate overnight
  5. The next day preheat your oven to 230 °C and set a rack over a rimmed baking sheet
  6. Fold the pork under itself, form a roll, tie it up with a string and season with salt and pepper
  7. Set the pork on the rack and roast for 30 minutes until lightly browned
  8. Reduce the heat to 190 °C and roast the pork for 90 minutes more
  9. Let it rest on a carving board for 30 minutes before slicing across the grain
  10. Heat a large griddle or a panini press (this is what I used)
  11. Add the ham slices to the opened press and cook over moderate heat, turning once, until browned in spots, about 1 minute. Transfer the ham to a plate
  12. Generously butter the cut sides of each ciabatta and toast on the press over moderate heat until lightly browned
  13. Transfer the ciabattas to a work surface and generously brush the cut sides with mustard
  14. Layer the ham, pork, Swiss cheese and pickles on the ciabattas and close the sandwiches
  15. Generously brush the outside of the sandwiches with butter and close the press on them
  16. Cook the sandwiches over moderate heat until they’re browned and crisp on the outside and the cheese is melted

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Budapest Cheese Steak Sandwich

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This one is from youtube, a source of inspiration that I am just now starting to explore (don’t know why I waited this long, don’t ask). The missuz requested steak sandwich as a birthday dinner (eat her heart out, pregnancy made her a true carnivore…and that is something that I totally approve of).

The original can be found here Big Daddy’s Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich. I decided to re-name it, because I have a strong feeling that this recipe might not be the original Philly Cheese, and I did not want to offend anyone. But there was no such thing previously as a Budapest Cheese Steak Sandwich, so it was a safe call. 🙂

What you will need:

  • 400 g very thinly sliced beef
  • 400 g mushrooms, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 bell pepper (red or green, your choice), thinly sliced
  • 4 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of worchester sauce
  • 200 g red cheddar, grated
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 medium sized baguettes, sliced open
  • jalapeno slices

How to make it:

  1. Put half of the meat in a bowl, pour in the worchester sauce, and half of the teriyaki sauce
  2. Put the other half of the meat in the bowl as well, followed by the remaining teriyaki sauce
  3. Gently mix the meat and the sauces up, cover, put it in the fridge and let it marinade for a good half hour at least
  4. Heat some oil in a fairly large frying pan, and sauté the onions and the bell pepper for 1-2 minutes
  5. Add in the mushrooms, frying the mixture for another 1-2 minutes
  6. Move the veggies to the side of the frying pan, and add in the meat, paying attention that it does not pile up and all pieces have place to cook through
  7. Give the meat a minute to cook, and then turn it around piece by piece. Make sure that one side of the meat is seared before you turn it around
  8. Start pre-heating your oven for the toasting phase (180 – 200 °C)
  9. When the meat is nearly done, add in some black pepper, and a pinch of salt
  10. Mix everything together in the pan
  11. Distribute the meat-veggie combo evenly amongst the baguettes, top it with the jalapeno and the cheese
  12. Toast your sandwiches for about 5 minutes. This will melt the cheese, and toast the bread a little
  13. Before serving, make sure to cut the sandwiches in half sideways so they can actually be eaten

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Chive pancakes with creamy mushroom filling

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This food made its way into our kitchen quite unusually. I was making  wellington steak for the missuz as a special dinner treat, and had some leftover chive pancakes, and creamy mushroom that I used for the steak.

I decided to fill the pancakes and cut them up into little rolls for appetizers. The dinner went amazingly well, although the next day my wife admitted, that the best part for her was the appetizer.

I have not made wellington since, but these pancakes are now regular. 🙂

What you will need:

  • 500 g mushrooms, sliced
  • 200 ml cream
  • handful of chives, minced
  • 150 g flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 dl milk
  • salt, pepper, thyme to taste

How to make it:

  1. In a bowl, mix the eggs with the flour until smooth
  2. Gradually add the milk to the mixture, whisking continously
  3. Add in the salt, pepper, and chives, mix well and refrigerate for 1-2 hours
  4. Melt the butter in a skillet, add in the onions and sauté them for 5 minutes
  5. Move the onions to the sides, add in the mushrooms, keeping them separated until the water has evaporated from them
  6. Once it’s only the mushrooms and the onions, you can mix them, adding in the salt, pepper, and after 1-2 minutes the cream as well
  7. Let your filling simmer for about 10 minutes on low heat, so it is thick enough to actually serve as filling, then put it aside (not too far as you will use it soon enough)
  8. Cook your pancakes, fill and serve (tartar sauce optional)

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Porkburger with braised red cabbage and mustard sauce

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I found this one on the streetkitchen blog once again. The title promised the “Best Porkburger in the World”, and I have to say I was pretty satisfied with the results. Of course, as always, making this at home was somehow a bit more difficult and way messier than in the cooking show, but then again I had only 1 shot at this. 🙂

What you will need:

For the burger:

  • 500 g ground pork
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 3 teaspoons marjoram
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 5 slices of bacon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 buns
  • 4 slices of emmental cheese
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • a handful of minced chives

For the braised cabbage:

  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 head of red cabbage, cut to ribbons
  • salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon vinegar

For the mustard sauce:

  • 2 dl broth
  • 2 dl white wine
  • 1 dl cream
  • 1 teaspoon irish mustard
  • 1 teaspoon seedy mustard
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • salt

How to make it:

  1. Cut the bacon into small bits
  2. Add the spices and the bacon to the ground meat, mix well, cover and put to the side
  3. Melt the butter in a pot, caramelize the sugar
  4. Sauté the onions, and add the cabbage
  5. Add in the salt and the vinegar. cover and on medium heat braise until you deem it finished (for me it was about the same time the burgers were ready)
  6. Pour the broth in a small pot, add in the wine and the cream, followed by the mustards and the honey
  7. Give your sauce-to-be a good stir, bring it to a boil
  8. Stir in the cornstarch, add a pinch of salt, and turn off the heat under the sauce
  9. Toast the buns in your grillpan (you can use some butter for this as well if you like)
  10. Form 4 patties from the meat, and grill them thoroughly, until they are cooked through, placing 1 slice of cheese on each patty so it melts

Assembly:

  1. Spread some mustard sauce on each half of the buns
  2. Start the burger with the red cabbage
  3. Top with the patty with the melted chese on it
  4. Add in a slice of tomato, and sprinkle with chives just for kicks

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Martabak

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I was lucky enough to spend a year in Indonesia during my university years. Naturally, it had an impact on my cooking as well. Indonesian cuisine is awesome, especially the streetfood you can get in the warungs.

You can get this deep fried piece of awesomeness in sweet and salty versions too. What I did here was simply trying to recreate it in my own kitchen. The result is far fro mperfect, but tastd pretty good.

What you will need:

  • puff pastry or springroll dough, roughly 200 g, cut into squares
  • 400 g minced meat, cooked
  • 5 big eggs
  • 12 stalks of spring onion, diced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 onion, diced
  • coconut oil for frying

How to make it:

  1. Mix the meat, the spices, the onions and the eggs in a bowl to make the filling
  2. Heat the coconut oil in a fring pan until very hot
  3. Place some filling into the pastry, and fold it together to form an envelpe like shape
  4. Fry the filled pasrty on one side until golden brown, turn over and fry the other side as well
  5. Soak the excess oil with kitchen towel

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Yoghurt Cornflakes Chicken with Almond and Feta Cous Cous

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I created this meal when we were told with the missuz to change to protein-heavy diet for the sake of the baby. It nearly everything we were advised to eat (i.e. white meat, almonds, cheese) in a very simple and quick dish.

What you will need:

  • 500 g chicken breast fillet cut into small strips
  • 150g feta cheese cubed
  • 100 g slivered almond
  • 500 ml yoghurt
  • roughly 100 g cornflakes
  • 250 g cous cous
  • 300 ml chicken broth
  • salt, pepper and spices to taste

How to make it:

  1. Pour the yoghurt in a large bowl, add in the salt, pepper, and any kind of spice you want really (I have made this with at least 3-4 different setups ranging from ready-mixed indian spices to the simple salt-pepper-garlic trio)
  2. Add in the chicken strips, mix well so they are covered in yoghurt, cover and let it rest for about an hour
  3. Pour the cornflakes in a bowl and crush it
  4. Pour the cous cous in a bowl, and pour the chicken broth over it. Cover, and put it aside for 30 minutes
  5. Heat the oven to 180 °C, take the chicken strips and cover them in the crushed cornflakes
  6. Place them on a baking tray and bake until golden brown, about 25-30 minutes
  7. Fluff up the cous cous with a fork, and mix in the feta and the almond

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Thai Turkeyburger with Sweet Potato Chips and Pineapple Salsa

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So it’s been a while since my last post…and a lot happened in the meantime. I became a father, and moved to our own home with my family. Year’s end has been busy for me.

The new home means new equipment as well. I now cook with an electric stove besides my electric oven, so from now on I will provide cooking times and methods according to that.

Once again, my trusty spirit guide in all thing kitchen, BBC’s Good Food was the source. More precisesly this recipe.

What you will need:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chips
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 500 gram minced beef
  • 2 tablespoons thai red curry sauce
  • 6 spring onions, chopped
  • small bunch of coriander, minced
  • 200g pineapple chunks, diced
  • juice ½ lime
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 2 tablespoon sweet chili sauce
  • 4 lettuce leaves
  • 4 buns halved and toasted

How to make it:

  1. Heat the oven to 200 °C (180 °C fan). Mix the sweet potato chips with the oligve oil, some salt and pepper, spred it on a baking sheet, and roast for 30-35 minutes, until crisp.
  2. Mix the mince with the curry paste, half the spring onions, half the coriander, and a pinch of salt. Shape it into 4 patties.
  3. Mix the remaining spring onions and coriander with the pineapple, lime juice, red chilli and sweet chilli sauce
  4. Cook the burgers for 4-5 minutes on each side in a grillpan until cooked through.
  5. Serve the burgers in the buns with lettuce leaves and salsa piled on top, and the sweet potato chips on the side.
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The moment before piling the salsa on the burgers