Cemitas Poblanas

Cemitas Poblanas

recipe c/o Luna Contreras


1 medium Pork Loin, fat trimmed

1 pinch Salt

1 pinch Pepper

1 cups Flour

2 large Eggs, lightly beaten

2 cups Unseasoned Breadcrumbs

1 cups Grapeseed Oil

1 cups Papalo, can substitute a combination of fresh cilantro, basil, and mint

1/2 medium Red Onion

2 small Radishes, thinly sliced

12 ounce Jalapenos en escabeche, cut into strips, brine reserved

1 drizzle Chelo Herby Serrano Hot Sauce, can substitute chipotles en escabeche

4 medium Brioche rolls

1 cups Crema Mexicana

8 ounce Shredded Oaxaca Cheese

2 large Hass Avocados

2 medium Limes, cut into wedges


Working in batches if needed, place the pork between 2 large pieces of plastic wrap and pound to ¼-inch thickness. Transfer the pork to a sheet tray and season both sides with salt and pepper.

In 3 separate, shallow bowls, place the flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs. Season each with salt and pepper. Line a second sheet tray with parchment paper.

Using 1 hand, dredge the pork in the flour, then the eggs, then the breadcrumbs. Using your clean hand (this creates less mess), place the pork on the lined sheet tray.

Add the grapeseed oil to a large high-sided pan and place over medium heat. (If you’re using a tabletop fryer, set it to 350ºF.) Once the oil is hot, add the pork to the pan and fry until deep golden brown, 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer the pork to a third sheet tray lined with paper towels.

Make the slaw: In a large bowl, mix together the papalo, onion, radishes, jalapeños, and reserved brine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the Herby Serrano Hot Sauce and toss to combine.

Split open the cemitas poblanas and toast them, then spread with a layer of crema Mexicana. Top with the pork cutlets, slaw, cheese, and avocados. If you like, you can add extras like julienned chipotle peppers or slices of ham, turkey, or crispy bacon. Serve with the lime wedges for squeezing over the cemitas, or add them to your cerveza!

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Dia de Muertos Cemitas

Dia de Muertos is almost upon us, and Chef Luna Contreras from Portland’s Chelo is streaming live with a Cemita that could wake the dead. Catch her on Kittch on October 28 at 4 p.m. PT.

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