Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Simple Life and Sandwiches


     Whew, the Great Cake really took it out of me. I mean, I've recovered from the making already but that was a Long post to write. I don't suppose any of you are attempting making it Right right now, but in case you have looked at the recipe, that was a long time of typing time right there. So, it's time to take a break. Slow down. Relax. And make some sandwiches.

     It's funny, I was telling PN today how I am really craving a bahn mi and want to make one eventually, but this sandwich itself is strangely reminiscent of a banh mi. Ok, it doesn't have shaved pork or vinegared carrots or a baguette. But the idea of cilantro and thin carrot slices and pork? It had to have come from somewhere. The pork was part of that never-ending pork shoulder, I had lopped a couple of chops off and just baked them with some salt, pepper, and oregano. I squeezed some lemon over this particular piece and then microwaved it (how high class) before slicing it to put on the sandwich.

     There's something about cilantro and carrots that just makes me think of summer. They are both so bright, in both color and taste, and so fresh. They made this sandwich completely 80 degree weather appropriate. It was such a good sandwich. The pork was flavorful and moist, the cilantro and carrots I have already waxed eloquent about, all wrapped up in some bread and a little butter. Sometimes, all you really need to recover from a hectic week is a really good simple meal, nothing special, just a sandwich. 

For the Pork

1/2 lb Pork Shoulder, hopefully that has been brining in water with salt and sugar
1 tsp Oregano 
1/2 tbsp Olive Oil 

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and spread the olive oil onto a baking shut. Slice the pork shoulder thickly, into about 2'' square, 1/2'' thick chops. Place the pieces on the baking sheet and turn them a couple of times so they are coated in olive oil. Sprinkle on a little bit of salt (not too much if it has been brining), some pepper, and the oregano. Turn them to make sure each side is coated in seasoning. Place in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes until cooked through (check after ten minutes, take out a piece and cut it in half and see if it is still pink inside, if it is leave it in for a few more minutes then take it out, you don't want it to overcook).

Faux Banh Mi 
1 Pork Piece
1/2 Lemon 
2 pieces White or Wheat Bread (I have Oatnut? whatever that means) 
A little Butter or Margarine
1/2 Mid Sized Carrot, Shaved using a Peeler
A handful Cilantro Leaves plucked from their stems 

Squeeze the lemon juice onto both sides of the pork. If the pork is cold, microwave it in the lemon juice for a minute to heat it through. Then, slice it thinly. Butter both pieces of bread, top one side with the carrot shavings, cilantro leaves, and pork. Cut the sandwich in half, and serve!

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