As Hispanic Heritage Month is coming to an end I need to add Cuban food to Global Gastronomy. The best of all, I come from a big Cuban family and been eating it my whole life. This includes several family get-togethers a year or eating in Miami’s many Cuban restaurants. The food is very good, albeit fattening. My grandmother used to make it best, but since she is no longer with us, I can’t have it any longer. I cook some myself. What I like to cook mainly though is my favorite Piccadillo (minced beef with tomato sauce, potatoes, garlic, onions, spanish olives, bay leaf) served with rice.
Anyway here are photos of what they are with the description:
My personal favorite dish, this is actually the “Cubano Classico” or “Cuban Sampler” from La Carretta, Cuban chain restaurants in the Miami area. Clockwise from top: Yuca, with onion sauce; Maduros (oil fried banana/plantains); Croquetta (with ham in the inside, similar to Dutch kroket/French croquettes); Pork; Tamale (with chorizo); and on the left side a bowl of black beans are poured over the white rice. So yummy. Make sure you eat this on a really empty stomach, and even then you may be taking a doggy bag.
Another one of my favorites is Arroz Moros rice. My grandmother made this the best. Honestly, I have tried a couple times but still cannot get it right. I should practice more I guess. It is black beans and rice mixed together but there is a certain trick to having it look and taste right.
Pork served with maduros and black beans and rice
Arroz con Pollo (yellow rice and chicken, with red pepper and green peas added
And for some Cuban Desserts:
Cuban Pastries (Pastelitos)
Pastelito con Carne (with minced beef)
Pastelito con Guava
Pastelito con Guava y Queso (cream cheese) and Pastelito con Queso (with sugar cane sprinkled on top)
Another good snack: Guava paste with cheese (many use cream cheese, but I like Swiss and any cheese is fine)
A very sugary but delicious cake: Merengue with Caramel
And another Cuban favorite, Tres Leches (cake soaked in condensed sweet milk)
And included either after lunch or an afternoon “picker-up” Cortado. Cuban expresso, with foam that is made by mixing the cream and sugar.