It all starts with the bread and then goes from there. Since I couldn't go to my local market and purchase traditional Cuban bread, I went to Le Boulangerie and purchased two freshly baked French rolls--super crispy crust with a soft interior. Hoagie or sub rolls that you purchase in the grocery store will not hold up to the pressing or substantial ingredients so make sure you search around and find the best rolls.
For a traditional Cuban sandwich the pork is braised and so I wanted to create a mojo braising liquid for the three seitan deli cuts that I used: Tofurky Smoked, Tofurky Peppered and Yves Ham. I made the mojo sauce, poured it into a saute pan and then added four slices of each of the deli cuts to heat through and reduce the sauce. That's 12 slices for one sandwich!
1 large Valencia Orange
1 1/2 limes
1 TBSP paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp finely minced fresh garlic
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
And now for the assembling...Cuban sandwiches use Swiss cheese, but I don't like the flavor of Daiya Swiss or Provolone and so I used my normal standby, which I love...Daiya Havarti Wedge, thinly sliced. On one side of the bread I placed a generous slather of spicy brown mustard and the other side Vegenaise. I then added cheese to both sides, dill pickle slices on one side and then layered on the deli cuts and topped with the reduced sauce and freshly black ground pepper and kosher salt.
This is a substantial sandwich folks...enough for two with a side salad or fries, but we each had our own and were stuffed!
A panini press with grill marks is not traditional and will not do, unless that's all you've got. I used my trusty cast iron skillet, along with my cast iron Indian bread pan, which provided a perfect weight to press the bread without flattening to a pancake. I added Earth Balance Butter to pan and cooked the sandwich on medium-low for three minutes, added more butter and flipped and cooked on the other side for three minutes.
Fantástico! and Delicioso! Need I say more?