Feb 2, 2016

Cooking with Beer - Cuban Sandwich

One of my favorites, grilled cheese and tomato soup!
This "beer" recipe is going to be a bit different. So please, bare with me...
Who doesn't love a good sandwich? I know I do! It may just be the ultimate comfort food. Who doesn't remember downing countless numbers of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, or for you New Englanders out there, fluffanutters! Or having that grilled cheese with a bowl of tomato soup after playing in the snow all morning on a snow day? I could go on! I have a lot of "favorite" sandwiches, however, of all the sandwiches in the world, the Cuban Sandwich is probably my second favorite of them all (2nd only to the grilled cheese, tomato and bacon sandwich).
Its a fairly simple sandwich, that is easy to make. However, if you want to kick up your Cuban a bit, and make it a lot more fun, and rewarding, and something to impress your company, try making it like I do. This is a collection of beer recipes that I combined to make one terrific sandwich.... a sort of beer lovers Cuban Sandwich! My advice, start making it now, because it takes at least 2 weeks to make it like this.

For those that don't know, a traditional Cuban sandwich (traditional American version anyway) is a sandwich, on a roll (normally a pinni), with pork, ham, cheese, pickles and mustard. This recipe, contains beer recipes for the pork, and mustard. Lets get started, shall we. We will make the mustard first....since that takes the longest.

Start at least 2 weeks before you want to eat your sandwich......

You will need;

3/4 cup Brown Mustard Seed
1/4 cup Yellow Mustard Seed
1 cup Beer (I like to use a nice, flavorful brown ale)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2 tbs Dark Brown Sugar
1tsp Sea Salt
1/2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
Canning Jar(s) (this recipe makes about 1.5 pints)



  1. Soak brown and yellow mustard seeds with dark beer in a large bowl set in the refrigerator for 24 hours. If the seeds soak up the beer too quickly, add more beer.
  2. Transfer the soaked mustard seeds to a food processor along with garlic, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, salt, and black pepper. Pulse until desired consistency is reached. I normally pull a few tablespoons worth of seeds to add back to the mustard after you have reached your desired consistency.
  3. Sterilize the jars and lids in boiling water for at least 5 minutes.
  4. Pack the mustard into the hot, sterilized jars, filling the jars to within 1/4 inch of the top.
  5. Wipe the rims of the jars with a moist paper towel to remove any food residue. Top with lids, and screw on rings.
  6. Refrigerate the jars of mustard for about 2 weeks before using.
Now, lets make the pork tenderloin.
First, lets make a brine for it.
You will need....
  • 1 cup Kosher Salt
  • ½ cup Sugar, Organic
  • 2 tbsp White Pepper
  • 8 each Garlic Cloves, peeled and minced
  • 8 each Bay Leaves
  • ¼ cup Sage Leaves, chopped
  • 2  Lemons, sliced thin
  • ¼ gallon Water
  • ½ gallon Beer (something more malty then hoppy, like an Oktoberfest, or nice Brown Ale

  • In a large pot, add the salt, sugar, white pepper, garlic, bay leaves, sage, lemons and water. Turn heat to medium, stir occasionally until the mixture comes to a boil. Turn off heat and let sit, to infuse the flavors, and cool to room temp. Add cold beer and mix well. Make sure the brine is below 45°, as you want to keep the pork cold. Add the brine to a large container that will hold both the brine and displacement of the pork. I like using the extra large, 2 gallon zip lock bags. Add the pork tenderloin to the bag. Make sure all the air is removed from the back, ensuring the entire loin is submerged in the brine. Place in fridge overnight, up to 24 hours.  The general rule of thumb is to brine 12 hours per 1 pound of pork. If you brine longer than that, you can risk having an over salty piece of pork.

    While the tenderloin is soaking up the brine, you can make the rub. For that, you will need....

    1 tbs smoked paprika
    1 tbs dark brown sugar
    1 tbs sea salt
    1/2 tbs chile powder (I like using Chipotle Chile powder)
    1/2 tbs ground black pepper
    1/4 tbs Allspice

    Mix all above ingredients in a bowl.

    Remove the tenderloin from the brine after desired time. Allow it to sit out until it has reached room temp. Apply a lite coat of olive oil over entire tenderloin, then add rub to tenderloin till entirely covered generously with the rub. Allow to sit for at least 10, up to 30 minutes at room temp before grilling.

    To grill, place on indirect medium heat until it has almost reached the desired temp (internally about 125, 130), then place over direct heat for a few minutes either side allowing for slight charring on both sides. Remove from grill, and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes at room temp before slicing into medium/thin pieces.

    Now, to assemble your sandwich...you will now need.

    Your favorite type of sub roll
    Previously made Mustard
    Previously Grilled Pork Tenderloin
    Deli Sliced Ham
    Provolone or Swiss Cheese
    Bread and Butter (or dill) Pickles

    Preheat oven to about 350 degrees
    Slice your roll length wise, in half, place halves opened on a sheet pan. Butter each half. Place deli ham slices on one half of the bread, place pork slices on top of the ham. Then place desired about of cheese on
    top of the pork. Place in oven until cheese is melted, and bread starts getting a little crispy (but not darkly toasted). Remove from oven,  place pickles on top of the melted cheese, and spread mustard over the open top half of bread. Put both halves together, slice in half, and there you go!

    One of the best, most flavorful sandwiches you will ever eat!!!

    If you make it, take some pictures, and send them my way!! I'd love to know what you think of it!

    Until next time
    Bottoms up my friends!

    The Beer Czar

    Feb 1, 2016

    Buy a Pint, Honor a Vet....

    I received this press release regarding a month long fund raiser at Scottsdale's Brat Haus, and Grand Canyon Brewing Co.
    I'll just paste the release below....I'll make sure all the appropriate links are attached as well...


    Brat Haus and Grand Canyon Brewing Team Up to Fundraise for WWII Honor Flights, One Pint at a Time!

    Scottsdale, AZ (February 1, 2016)—This February, Brat Haus in Scottsdale is teaming
    up with Grand Canyon Brewing Company in a month long fundraiser to benefit the Honor Flight Network—a charity organization that sends war veterans to Washington D.C. to visit memorials built to honor their service to the nation.
    “It’s important for us to show our appreciation for the sacrifices these veterans have made,” Dave Andrea, owner of Brat Haus said. “Partnering with the Grand Canyon Brewing to benefit this charity gives me the opportunity to show my support to the men and women that fought for our country.”
    During the entire month of February, Brat Haus will donate $1 to the Honor Flight Network for every pint of Grand Canyon beer sold at the restaurant. Grand Canyon Brewing Company, which is veteran owned and operated, plans to match every dollar raised by Brat Haus to benefit the charity.
    “As a war veteran myself, I understand the importance of the Honor Flight Network,” said John Peasley, owner of Grand Canyon Brewing Company. “I know firsthand how much our military veterans deserve to be honored. I’m glad we can work together with Brat Haus to raise money for this fantastic opportunity.”
    Honor Flight Network is a non-profit organization created to honor America’s veterans. Donations to the organization help transport veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit memorials that recognize the sacrifices and accomplishments of soldiers who fought during WWII, The Korean War and The Vietnam War. For more information, visit: www.honorflight.org
    About Brat Haus
    Nestled in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale, Brat Haus features Arizona's most welcoming beer garden with 28 craft beers on tap. The menu features made from scratch cuisine inspired by European food craftsmen, offering a wide variety of brats, burgers, salads and sides. The open air patio paired with delicious grub and genuine hospitality from friendly servers, makes Brat Haus the perfect Scottsdale spot for a casual lunch or dinner. Elevate your merriment by enjoying one of the patio games including bag toss, ping pong, darts and life-sized Jenga. The patio is also a dog friendly zone – so be sure to bring Fido along for the fun. Brat Haus is located at 3622 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 and is open on Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. and Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. Visit Brat Haus online at www.brathausaz.com to view upcoming events and for the full in house and catering menus. Also, be sure to give us a “like” on social channels at www.facebook.com/brathausaz.
    About The Grand Canyon Brewing Company
    The Grand Canyon Brewing Company is located in historic downtown Williams, AZ at 233 W. Route 66. This family owned and operated microbrewery produces a dozen different specialty craft brews each year. While in the Williams, AZ area, patrons can enjoy Grand Canyon Brewing’s hand-crafted beer at the Cruisers Route 66 CafĂ© located next door to the brewery. For more information about the Grand Canyon Brewing Company, visit online at www.grandcanyonbrewery.com and be sure to “like” us in Facebook at www.facebook.com/grandcanyonbrewery.