Anybody who knows me knows that I have a special place in my heart for Tom Colicchio’s Craft family of restaurants. I will go out of my way to visit any one of them – Colicchio has really captured what it is that I love about food, and I’ve never been disappointed when spending my hard earned money at one of his places. I especially love ‘Wichcraft, which is his line of casual sandwich shops. I order lunch from there at least once a week, because everything is fresh and delicious. I couldn’t believe it took me so long to pick up his ‘Wichcraft Cookbook, but once I finally grabbed a copy, I couldn’t put it down. Now, you may be thinking that someone paid me to say all of this, but I assure you, this is coming from a completely genuine place – I simply adore everything Craft. I actually got to shake Tom’s hand one day when I was at Chelsea Market with my dad, and I was so blown away that I actually got to meet him in person – this is why I moved to New York! Either way, I’ve already shared a few small recipes from this book – the pickled mustard seeds and the Italian salsa verde when I made brisket last week, but I really wanted to show you the beauty of this book. That’s why I am going to be posting a new recipe from The ‘Wichcraft Cookbook every day this week, after which I will give away a copy of ‘Wichcraft! All you have to do to enter is comment on any of the posts this week and tell me why you love sandwiches – it could be about what your favorite sandwich was growing up, what you like to make at home, or what a simple sandwich means to you. My mom can tell you that I’ve been a big sandwich fan since I was in junior high school, and I want to hear your stories, too! Believe me, you will definitely want to score a copy of this book after you see what possibilities the book has in store. You can also like me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter for more information on how to win!
To begin, I’m going to share with you this Slow-Roasted Pork with Red Cabbage, Jalapenos, and Mustard. This is the first sandwich that I made from the book, and the best part is that this pork recipe is used in two different sandwiches, so you can double up and make two exciting meals with one easy roast. I don’t think it gets much better than that. The pork is rubbed in an aromatic mixture of star anise, whole cloves, caraway seeds, and plenty of salt, then roasted slowly for four hours in the oven and shredded when it is fall apart tender. The pork is then placed on a ciabatta roll (or any bread you prefer) that has been slathered in Dijon mustard, and topped with tangy cabbage and spicy jalapeno peppers. The combination is absolutely perfect – a little salty, a little sweet, a little spicy…all of my favorite flavor profiles combined, just what a sandwich should be. If this doesn’t convince you of what a great little cookbook this is, I don’t know what will.
- 1 tablespoon caraway seeds
- 3 whole cloves
- 1 star anise
- ½ tablespoon black peppercorns
- ⅓ cup kosher salt
- 1 small boneless pork shoulder (about 1½ pounds)
- 2 cups shredded red cabbage
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 4 ciabatta rolls
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 large jalapeno pepper, sliced thinly
- Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Combine the caraway seeds, cloves, star anise, and peppercorns in a spice grinder/coffee grinder (or, if you are going the old fashioned way, a motar and pestle) and grind the spices together until they become a coarse spice rub.
- Rub the pork well with the spice mixture, getting under the skin if you didn’t cut the skin off. Place the meat in a roasting pan or on a baking sheet with a cooling rack on top (like I did), and cover tightly with foil. Place in the oven for 4 hours, or until the meat is fork tender. Place the pork on a cutting board and slice or shred. Throw away any fat in the bottom of the pan.
- Turn the oven’s heat up to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, toss together the cabbage, oil, and vinegar, then generously add salt and pepper, taste, and adjust the flavors according to your taste.
- Slice the ciabatta rolls in half, then spread the mustard evenly across all the bottom halves. Place the pork on the bottom halves, then put the bottom halves with the pork and the top halves on a baking sheet and place them in the oven until the pork is warmed through and the bread is toasted. Top the pork with the cabbage and jalapeno, then place the top half of the roll on top. Cut the sandwiches into halves and serve. The pork and cabbage keep well in separate, air-tight containers for 4 days.