Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Jarlsberg wants to send me to EWR12

I've never been to a blogger conference. I've read the good, the bad, and the giddy from bloggers who were at conferences. Are they worth it? I guess it depends on who you ask, and what the conference is.

Last year, I really wasn't interested in going to a conference. But this year, well, I think it might be fun. It would be even more fun if someone wanted to help defray some expenses.

You know, like maybe a cheese company. Like Jarlsberg. They're sponsoring a contest for one blogger's entry to Eat Write, Retreat, and I'm feeling lucky.

Cheese and I have a long history. We've been good friends as far back as I can remember. Cheese should send me to a blogging conference, don't you think?

One of my favorite cheesy, melty Jalsberg relationships is all about a particular sandwich. A Cuban sandwich.

When my husband and I lived in Chicago, there were a few places where we could get Cuban sandwiches. After we moved to Colorado, those fantastic sandwiches were hard to come by..

So I made my own, starting with the bread and ending with smashing the sandwiches in a sandwich press.

And somewhere in the middle of the sandwich, nestled on top of the ham and pork, Jarlsberg cheese melted and glued the sandwich together and oozed enticingly out the sides.

I've made a lot of Cuban sandwiches since that first one, and each time it's not just about the flavors, it's also about the history of our relationship with the sandwich.

I don't remember my first hot dog or my first hamburger, but I remember that first Cuban sandwich that I ate with my husband.

A Cuban sandwich is a simple thing, and I've published the recipe before, so I'm not going to republish it. But I do encourage you to try one.

It's almost just a ham and cheese sandwich, but somehow the extra ingredients elevate it to something that's more than the sum of its parts.

There are some opinions as to whether the sandwich should have mayonnaise, and maybe some opinions about the exact type of mustard and pickle, but roast pork, ham, and cheese are a must.

Real Cuban bread is hard to come by, but a baguette will suffice. And the sandwich is always pressed.

So there you go. Start with a baguette. Slather some grainy mustard on the bread, and mayo, if you choose. Top with thinly sliced roast pork, thinly sliced ham, Jarlsberg cheese, and hamburger dills.

Put the sandwich in a sandwich press and heat it and smash it until you have a dense and tasty sandwich, warm on the inside, with melty cheese.

So there ya go. Me and cheese. Really good friends.