the appetizer:

Check out the international recipes from Top Chef: The Cookbook by Bravo Media, including Moroccan Cubanos; Ecuadorian Ceviche with Popcorn Cakes; and Hamachi Poke with Pineapple Poi and Taro Chips.

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Moroccan Cubanos

Moroccan Cubanos


Tom Colicchio, Head Judge: "I liked the idea that there was a nice little salad in there that cooled off some of the heat."


Pickled Vegetables

To Serve

For the Pork:

1. Preheat the oven to 275°F.

2. Season the pork generously with salt and ras al-hanout.

3. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Add the pork and cook until well browned on all sides, about 12 minutes total.

4. Put the pork in a large roasting pan and pour in the stocks and 1/2 cup water. Roast for 4 to 5 hours, until the pork is tender enough to pull apart with a fork.

5. Remove the pork to a cutting board and pour the cooking juices into a small saucepan. Cook the juices over high heat until reduced to about 3/4 cup; shred the pork into bite-size pieces, discarding the bones. In a large bowl, toss the pork with the reduced juices.

For the Pickled Vegetables:

1. In a large nonreactive pot, combine the vinegar, sugar, fennel, and 3 cups water and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

2. Put the carrots, onion, and chiles in a large heatproof bowl. Pour the hot vinegar mixture into the bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let the vegetables steam for 20 minutes. Pour out all but about 1 cup of the liquid. Keep the vegetables, covered, in the refrigerator; bring to room temperature when ready to serve.

To Serve:

1. In a skillet over medium-high heat, warm the pitas, one at a time.

2. Pile the pork onto the pitas, top with pickled vegetables, and serve immediately.

What Is Ras Al-Hanout?

Ras al-hanout (pronounced "RAS-all-hah-NOOT") is a Moroccan spice blend. It's available in specialty and Middle Eastern markets, or you can make your own. Combine 2 teaspoons each ground cumin, ground ginger, and salt, and 1 teaspoon each freshly ground black pepper, ground cayenne, ground coriander, and ground cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves.


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This page created June 2008