Craving the Cubano

I don’t get to a lot of movies in the movie theater. Unlike some friends who seem to be going to the movies weekly, I generally get to the theaters about 3-4 times a year. Don’t get me wrong, I like seeing movies, but a combination of a spouse that rarely can sit and watch a whole movie without also doing something else, and wanting to spend my entertainment dollars on other things, makes it rare that I go.

Because of that, each movie that I go see really needs to be worth my while. It generally seems like when I am ready to go, there are two competing movies that I have to decide between. Unfortunately I tend to make some bad choices. Really bad ones. Don’t believe me? Check it out:

  • The battle of the leading men: Al Pacino in Any Given Sunday or Tom Hanks in The Green Mile. One is a classic (hint: mile) and the other I found awful. I went for Pacino
  • The battle of Gravity stars: George Clooney in The Men Who Stare at Goats or Sandra Bullock in The Blind Side. Yup. I chose the goats.

In May of 2014 we went to the movies and there was only one that I really wanted to see, Chef. Written and directed by Jon Favreau, it is a story of a high-end chef rediscovering his culinary roots, and in the process reconnecting with his family. Favreau also stars in the film and, in my opinion, does not disappoint.

The food looks good in the movie. While there are a number of dishes, the (food) star of the film is the Cuban sandwich. When I left the theater I had a strong craving for one.

Photo Feb 23, 11 39 39 AM copy - Featured Size

This version is built for the low-carb crowd. Eschewing the traditional roll, the sandwich is captured between lettuce leaves.

Photo Feb 23, 11 03 56 AM

Six simple ingredients.

Photo Feb 23, 11 07 53 AM

I had whole pickles, so brought out the mandolin to make the prerequisite slices.

Photo Feb 23, 11 12 08 AM

I decided to put it under the broiler to melt the cheese instead of the microwave. Here you see the sandwiches in the various stages of assembly.

Photo Feb 23, 11 25 07 AM

Prep the lettuce for when the meat and cheese is ready. YUM!!!

Cubano Lettuce Wrap

prep 8 mins ∙ cook 2 min ∙ makes 4 servings ∙ difficulty Easy ∙ source


  • 8 slices boiled no-sugar-added ham (about 1/4 pound)
  • 8 slices Swiss cheese (about 1/4 pound)
  • 8 slices Mojo Pork Roast (or other pork roast)
  • 1 kosher dill pickle, thinly sliced lengthwise
  • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
  • 4 outer leaves Boston lettuce
  • Equipment: toothpicks


On a microwave proof plate, layer 2 slices ham, 1 slice cheese, 2 slices roast pork, 1 pickle slice and 1 more slice of cheese. Heat in the microwave for about 30 seconds–just long enough to melt the cheese.

Spread 1/2 teaspoon mustard on the inside of a lettuce leaf, top with the layered meat and cheese, and roll it up. Secure with a toothpicks. Repeat to make 4 total.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Cheese3, Cuban, Low Carb, Lunch3, Pork2, Recipes, Sandwich or Wrap

Author:The Ranting Chef

Check out the best recipes at

4 Comments on “Craving the Cubano”

  1. September 5, 2014 at 4:23 pm #

    Looks really good!


  2. September 6, 2014 at 1:15 am #

    Thanks for this one! I have just been ‘told’ that my daughter wants a ‘Host a murder Mystery’ dinner party for her birthday and we are looking for interesting low carb courses – I reckon this fits he bill beautifully!


  3. September 7, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    Damn, awesome TV food! Really inspirational 🙂


  4. September 12, 2014 at 3:42 am #

    Great post – I watched Chef on route to Bali last week and loved it – bring on the cubanos!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: