Recipe courtesy of Ginevra Iverson for Food Network Kitchen

Lemongrass Pork Picnic Sandwich

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 4 hr 15 min (includes marinating and pickling times)
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
Inspired by the flavors of a Vietnamese banh mi, this large-format sandwich is a showstopper designed for a crowd. We stuff a boule with grilled lemongrass pork, quick-pickled carrots and daikon and colorful fresh summer herbs and vegetables, then wrap it up and weigh it down to allow the flavors to marry. A couple of hours later, the pressed sandwich is ready to slice into wedges and enjoy at a picnic or party.


Pork and Marinade:

Pickled Vegetables:



Special equipment:
a 2-burner cast-iron grill pan such as a Food Network™ Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Reversible Grill; a cast-iron skillet such as a Food Network™ Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Skillet and a mandoline, optional (see Cook’s Note)
  1. For the pork and marinade: Whisk together the oil, brown sugar, fish sauce, soy sauce, garlic, lemongrass, ginger, shallot and 1 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add the pork chops and rub to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, up to overnight.
  2. For the pickled vegetables: Meanwhile, combine the sugar, 1 tablespoon salt and 1 1/2 cups water in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over high heat. Remove from the heat and stir until the sugar and salt are fully dissolved. Add the vinegar and let cool for 10 minutes.
  3. Add the shallots, carrots and daikon to the saucepan and fully submerge, using a small plate to weigh them down if necessary, for at least 1 hour. (The pickled vegetables can be made up to a week in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container.)
  4. Heat a 2-burner cast-iron grill pan over medium-high heat until evenly hot, about 10 minutes.
  5. Remove the pork chops from the marinade and discard any excess. Grill until dark brown, charred in spots and cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.
  6. For the sandwich: Slice the boule in half horizontally. Remove some of the fluffy interior from both halves and reserve for breadcrumbs or another use. Spread the cut sides with the mayonnaise and sriracha. Layer the pork chops on the bottom half and sprinkle with the Maggi seasoning. Drain the pickled vegetables and layer them on top of the pork. Top with a layer of cucumbers, then jalapeños, then tomatoes. Fill the top half of the boule with the cilantro, then carefully flip to close the sandwich. Wrap the sandwich tightly in aluminum foil and refrigerate with a cast-iron skillet on top. Add a few jars of whatever is already in your refrigerator to the skillet to help weigh it down. Let sit for at least 2 hours, up to overnight, for the flavors to marry.
  7. Unwrap the sandwich and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. Cut into 8 wedges.

Cook’s Note

While not essential, a mandoline allows you to easily and quickly slice the vegetables for pickling. If you do it by hand, make sure your chef’s knife is sharp.