Scarcity and the Myth of the Cuban Sandwich

What you missed on shotofcafecubano; Article on shortages under the revolutionary government and how this has redefined Cuban Cuisine for those on the island.


My husband was born and raised in Cuba. He grew up in Granma and at the age of 17 he moved to Havana, where he lived until we left the island in 2012. It would surprise many readers to learn, I suspect, that the first time Rafael ate ropa vieja was when I treated him to dinner at a fancy Havana paladar in Fall 2011; the first time he drank a mojito was during my mother’s visit to Havana that January; and most surprisingly, that the first time he ever ate a “Cuban Sandwich” was at a baseball park in Chicago in 2012.

So how is it that a meat-eating Cuban lived 24 years on the island without ever eating a Cuban sandwich, an item that many assume is a staple of Cuban cuisine? The answer is simple, albeit surprising: Cuban sandwiches do not exist in Cuba today. Cuban families…

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