Grilled Pork Bánh Mi Sliders with Kimchee Slaw

© Katherine Stetson

Asian Grilled Pork

  • 1 pound (4 pieces) pork loin, trimmed
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/3 cup peanut oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 ½ tablespoons fish sauce (available in the Asian food aisle)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons garlic chili paste (available in the Asian food aisle)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 spring onions, white and green parts, ¼ inch slices

Slice raw pork as thinly as possible.  Mix remaining marinade ingredients together in a plastic zipper bag.  Add the pork and marinate for a minimum of 4 hours.

Prepare a gas or charcoal grill to medium high.  Grill pork slices to desired doneness.  Remove to a warm platter and cover with foil until ready to assemble the sliders.

Nuoc Cham Sauce

For one cup:

  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • ¼ cup fish sauce (available in the Asian food aisle)
  • ¼ cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons garlic chili paste (available in the Asian food aisle)
  • 1 large garlic clove, finely minced
  • ¼ finely grated carrot

Combine lime juice, fish sauce, water and sugar in a small bowl and stir to dissolve.  Add remaining ingredients and mix well.  Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to let the flavors develop.

Kimchee Peanut Slaw

For two cups:

  • ½ cup kimchee, cut into julienne
  • 1 cup Romaine lettuce, ribs removed, cut into julienne
  • ¼ cup sliced scallion, white and green parts
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • ¼ cup roasted peanuts, chopped
  • ¼ cup Nuoc Cham sauce (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • several grindings of black pepper

Combine all ingredients (except for Nuoc Cham sauce) in a medium bowl and toss until well combined.  When ready to serve, add the sauce and toss again.

Assemble the sliders:

  • 8 slider rolls
  • grilled pork, prepared
  • kimchee slaw, tossed

Split slider rolls in half. Divide pork amongst rolls and top with the slaw.

Righteous Reuben Sandwich

© Katherine Stetson

The success of this simple open-faced sandwich depends on two elements, quality and freshness of its ingredients.

For each sandwich:

  • 1 large slice of rye, pumpernickel or marble rye bread, cut from a boule
  • 4 ounces pastrami or corned beef, thinly sliced, trimmed as needed
  • 1/3 cup fresh sauerkraut, or less or more to taste
  • 1 large slice Baby Swiss cheese
  • generous slather of Snarling Russian Dressing or your favorite mustard
  • several grindings of black pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Toast bread slice to desired crispness.  Layer on meat followed by sauerkraut followed by dressing followed by cheese and black pepper.  Place sandwich on a baking sheet and cook for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.  Switch oven to broiler setting and continue to cook until cheese has browned slightly.  Serve immediately with a small side of dressing for the dunking the sandwich in.

The TLC BLT

© Katherine Stetson

It’s the care you give each of five simple ingredients that make this sandwich so spectacular!

The Bread:  homemade bread is best, of course, and I recommend Whole Wheat Molasses, Simply White or Honey Buttermilk.  Toast it properly and spread a little unsalted butter on the inside on one of the slices.

The Bacon:  for best results, start bacon cooking in a cold skillet ad never let the heat exceed medium.  Turn strips often, stretching each piece to ensure even rendering and crispiness.   Drain well on paper toweling.

The Mayo:  homemade is best, of course, but Hellmann’s is very good as an alternative.  Stir in some fresh herbs for a bright flavor.

The Tomato:  a garden fresh tomato is essential and beefsteak tomatoes are preferred.  With a sharp paring knife, cut out the core and slice to desired thickness.  Season each tomato slice with sea salt, freshly ground pepper and Adobo seasoning (optional).

The Lettuce:  iceberg lettuce is too wet for this juicy sandwich.  Use Butter Leaf or Red Leaf lettuce, rinsed and spun dry.

Taco Quesadilla

© Katherine Stetson

A great use for leftover taco meat!  Serve with a salad and your favorite Mexican garnishes.

For each quesadilla:

  • 2 8-inch flour tortillas
  • refried beans
  • taco meat
  • Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 teaspoons butter

Spread refried beans on one of the tortillas.  Sprinkle taco meat on top of the beans followed by the grated cheese and the remaining tortilla.

In a large skillet or griddle, melt one teaspoon of butter.  Fry quesadilla over medium heat until browned.  Carefully flip quesadilla and slide in a little more butter if needed.  When browned, transfer to a cutting board and use a pizza cutter to slice into six pieces.

Served garnished with salsa, sour cream or any other favorites.

The Classic Grinder

© Katherine Stetson

The secret to the classic grinder is good bread, a hot oven and some crunchy vegetables dressed with a bit of vinaigrette.

For each grinder:

  • 1 baguette or sub roll
  • capicola, as many slices as you like
  • hard salami, as many slices as you like
  • Black Forest ham, as many slices as you like
  • Provolone cheese, as many slices as you like
  • Tomato, thinly sliced and seasoned with salt and pepper

Crunchy Topping:

  • shredded lettuce
  • thinly sliced red onion
  • thinly sliced green pepper
  • dash of dried oregano
  • House Vinaigrette

Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

In a medium bowl, add lettuce, onions, pepper and oregano.  Toss lightly with a little of the vinaigrette.  Refrigerate until needed.

Split baguette or sub roll almost all the way.  Open it up flat and place meats on one side and the cheese and tomatoes on the other.  Bake on a sheet pan until edges begin to brown and cheese has melted, about 8-10 minutes.

Remove sheet pan from oven and top grinder with a generous helping of crunchy topping.

Boondocks Hot Brown

© Katherine Stetson

The classic version was born in Kentucky, and this is our version for the Boondocks!  A good trick is to warm the turkey slices directly in the sauce prior to assembling the sandwiches.

For four sandwiches:

  • 4 slices home-style sandwich bread, preferably homemade, toasted
  • 8 slices of bacon, cooked to a crisp, drained and set aside
  • sufficient slices of roast turkey to cover four slices of toasted bread
  • 8 slices of ripe tomato, seasoned
  • 1 cup Parmesan Wine Sauce, recipe follows
  • freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Parmesan Wine Sauce Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • ¾ cup whole milk, warmed
  • ¼ cup dry white wine, warmed

In a small skillet over medium heat, melt butter and add flour and cayenne.  Whisk to combine and allow to cook for about 1-2 minutes.  Slowly add milk and wine, whisking constantly until mixture thickens.  Stir in cheese until melted and creamy.  Add turkey slices and simmer briefly.

Preheat the broiler.  Assemble toasts on a baking sheet.  Top with the warmed turkey and sauce and the tomatoes.  Broil for several minutes, until bubbling, and add the bacon atop the tomatoes.  Broil for an additional 20-30 seconds.  Serve immediately.

Copyright © Katherine Stetson, all rights reserved.