Fat & Happy: Cubanito Bowl

Here at Gozamos, we are celebrating Latino heritage this month and that calls for a Cuban recipe… my version, of course. Let’s take a look at the traditional Cubano Sandwich. Any sandwich that can tout two layers of pork ranks high in my book. Add on the crispy pickle, a swipe of spicy mustard, the crunchy grilled bread and the melty cheese-oh man is this living.

As much as it pains me to admit this, I wanted to lighten this dish up slightly. Substituting turkey for the shredded pork was step one, step two was to remove the heavy bread. The result is a lighter, appetizer-esque version of the classic Cubano which I’m nicknaming the Cubanito Bowl.

Cubanito Bowl

Grilled Cuban Turkey (or Pork)

  • 1 tbsp. cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp. peppercorns
  • 1/2 tbsp. coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 turkey loin, 1 lb

Toast the seeds in a dry pan over medium heat for just a few minutes, the pan will smoke. Grind all the seeds in a mortar and pestle or in a coffee grinder. Mix with the sugar and salt.

Spread on turkey, cover and let it sit in fridge overnight. Remove from fridge 20 minutes prior to grilling to allow the meat to come to room temperature. Grill until meat reaches 165 degrees on a meat thermometer. If you don’t have a grill or it’s the middle of winter in the Midwest, sear the turkey on all sides and finish in the oven.

Remove from heat, rest 15 minutes and then shred with two forks. You can do this step up to 2 days prior.

Pickle Slaw:

  • 4 small cucumbers, grated and drained
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 cup red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 tbsp. champagne vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. dijon mustard, black 1 tsp sugar
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley

Grate the cucumbers and set in a strainer for about 10 minutes, lightly salt (this will help draw out the juice). Squeeze out any excess water. Place in a bowl with the shredded carrot and the the thinly sliced onion. Add in the remaining ingredients and toss.

Mustard Yogurt

  • 1 cup Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
  • 3 tbsp. spicy mustard
  • black pepper

Combine the yogurt and mustard together, add a bit of pepper and set aside.

Putting the Cubanito Bowl together:

  • Deli ham- 5 slices, chopped
  • 1 cup of shredded jack cheese
  • 1 package of wonton wrappers
  • 2 tbsp. melted butter

Push one wonton wrapper into each cup of a muffin tin pan and brush lightly with the melted butter. Place in a 350 degree oven and toast until the wontons are lightly browned.
Add a few pinches of the shredded cheese into the toasted cups, top with the ham and some shredded turkey (stuff it full). Place back in the oven for 2 – 5 minutes, just until the cheese melts. Remove from oven- serve immediately with the pickle slaw and mustard yogurt.

Tips and Techniques: Make a larger bowl by overlapping a couple of the wonton wrappers in larger muffin tins. Using pork will yield more flavor over turkey; the seasoning mix below is amazing on both.

Find more great recipes on Monique’s Blog at http://fatandhappyblog.blogspot.com/

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