Chef is holy ground for film foodies, and as demonstrated in a previous episode, has some real culinary chops behind it (courtesy of Roy Choi). I love a good Cubano as much as the next guy, but can some garlic and citrus really elevate my favorite hangover snack into something worthy of a What-About-Bob-Style "mmm"-fest?



  • 1 large bone-in pork shoulder

  • 4 cups orange juice

  • 2 cups water

  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar

  • 1/2 cup spiced rum

  • 1/2 cup kosher salt

  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar

  • Whole head of garlic, cloves peeled and crushed

  • 2 stems oregano, roughly chopped

  • 2 stems rosemary, roughly chopped

  • 2 stems thyme, roughly chopped

  • 2 stems sage, roughly chopped

  • 3 bay leaves

  • 1/2 cup olive oil

  • 3 oranges, juiced and zested

  • 6 limes, juiced and zested

  • 2 stems oregano, roughly chopped

  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro

  • 1/4 cup chopped mint leaves

  • Whole head of garlic, cloves peeled and crushed

  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt

  • 1 Tbsp freshly ground pepper

  • 2 Tbsp toasted and freshly ground cumin

  • 1 loaf of pan Cubano

  • 4 Tbsp butter, at room temperature

  • 8 ounces thick deli ham

  • 12 slices swiss cheese

  • Dill pickles, thinly sliced

  • 4 Tbsp mustard


Makes 1 large roast, 4 sandwiches

  1. Remove excess fat from pork roast, and score fat cap on the top. Combine orange juice, water, rice wine vinegar, rum, salt, brown sugar, garlic, oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, and bay leaves in a large bowl - whisk to combine.  Place the pork shoulder in a large stainless steel bowl, and pour marinade over top, making sure it’s completely submerged.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours.

  2. To make mojo marinade: combine olive oil, orange juice & zest, lime juice & peels, oregano, cilantro, mint, garlic, salt, pepper, and cumin, whisking to combine.

  3. Remove pork shoulder from brine and discard brine.  Place pork shoulder back into stainless steel bowl, and cover with mojo marinade.  Massage marinade into the pork for one minute before covering and refrigerating for 2 hours.

  4. Remove pork from the marinade, brushing off any large pieces of herbs.  Place on a wire rack set in a rimmed baking sheet, brush with marinade, and roast at 350°F for 2 1/2 hours, until pork registers 165°F at its thickest point.  Tent the roast with foil and allow to rest for 30 minutes, or refrigerate until ready to use.

  5. Butter the inside of the pan Cubano, cut into 4 pieces, and toast butter-side-down in a hot plancha.  Slice pork about 1/4-inch thick.  In a lightly oiled nonstick pan, sear pork and ham.  Fill sandwiches with pork, ham, cheese, and pickles - smear with mustard, smear top exterior of the pan Cubano with butter, and press in the plancha for 2-3 minutes, until bread is deeply browned and cheese is melted.  Cut diagonally and serve.