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Unfortunately, Waterloo Region doesn’t have a “Little Havana,” but it does have Cubanos — one of the world’s great sandwiches.
The Cuban sandwich is made of seasoned and marinated roast pork, some good ham, some good cheese, some good mustard, a slice or two of pickle and a soft bun. A critical piece of equipment is a sandwich press — or some McGyver’ed “pot-on-pan” improvisation that gets the sandwich slightly compressed and crispy-toasted. Mojo is a citrusy, garlicky, cumin-tinged sauce that often accompanies.
As with so many classic dishes, the combinations and permutations of these ingredients are many. (The sandwich photo herein is not from B @ THEMUSEUM but rather the popular Tampa, FL, restaurant Ybor City.)
Gastronomically, the Cubano myth is that workers in Cuban cigar factories and sugar mills would eat the sandwiches for lunch. Of course, with Castro and the revolution starting the late-1950s, there was a Cuban diaspora and the folks leaving the island brought their sandwiches with them. I’m glad they did.
A number of restaurants in the Region serve a Cuban or mixto, including B @ THEMUSEUM in downtown Kitchener. Here’s how their sammie goes down: mojo pork, house pickles, Mountainoak Gouda, beer mustard, garlic aioli pressed in a Portuguese bun ($13).
That sounds great, doesn’t it?[Image: Zeng8r via Wikimedia Commons]
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