(Image credit: Tara Donne)
With its combination of tender roasted pork, smoked ham, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard, a Cuban sandwich is pretty close to the ideal sandwich. It checks all the right boxes of salty, smoky, meaty, melty, and tangy.
But what if you were to take a classic Cubano and cross it with a grilled cheese? We thought it sounded like a good idea, too, when we spotted it on the menu at chef Richard Hales’ Bird & Bone (the fact that it was served with waffle-cut fries didn’t hurt either).
The biggest difference between your typical Cuban sandwich and Hales’ riff is the choice of bread and the style of grilling; he also throws mayo into the mix and is particular about his ham. But before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let’s back up a bit and take a look at what makes a Cuban sandwich.