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Live, Love, Laugh at Salads

Braised Pork and Apple Cheese Sandwich

By Amos GladePublished 4 months ago Updated 4 months ago 6 min read
Live, Love, Laugh at Salads
Photo by Matt Seymour on Unsplash

Hello fellow foodies and avid LLLS readers, it’s me, Jennilyn, and I wanted to start off by apologizing for not posting for a while. I’ve received a lot of your correspondence asking where I am and when I will be posting again. Don’t you fret! Live, Love, Laugh at Salads is back and ready to tingle your taste buds.

You might remember on my last post, featuring Honey & Fig Grilled Duck, I ended by letting you know I would be taking two weeks off to travel with Tom through the grand hiking trails of Mankott Island. Well, two weeks turned into a little more after some life events occurred including a significantly nasty cold that I just got over, but it gave me a chance to reminisce about my childhood cold comfort food: broiled cheese sandwiches.

Of course, I can’t just straight up broil a grilled cheese sandwich for my beloved followers. I hope you know that I am going to put a Live, Love, Laugh at Salads twist on it!

After arriving on the island and being adorned with a lei of frangipani and hibiscus we set off to find our hotel and, more importantly, our first meal. Somehow, like always, our first meal was my favorite: an apple cider braised pork over corn grits; the meat was so tender and fall-off-the-bone juicy!

I know what you are thinking! Jennilyn, braised pork is an autumn dish, not a summer dish! Well, I tried it anyway, and I am a converted believer in braised pork summers! The trick is adding summer spiced apples to bring that warm and cozy cottage feeling. I mean, there is nothing more iconically summery than apple pie!

One of our goals during the trip was for Tom and I to take a lovely hike to see one of the island’s quintessential landmarks, the Pomme a la Bouche Waterfall. How coincidental it was to see fresh vanilla vines growing within reachable distance along the trails. Despite Tom’s insistence that we stay with the group I could not help myself from sampling some of the freshest vanilla on earth.

Vanilla can add a lot of flavor to many things, but believe me when I say that fresh vanilla beans add an entirely ethereal flavor of their own to any dish (including my favorite, vanilla bean ice cream.) Keep in mind that vanilla beans are not the most sustaining food for getting lost in a foreign island wilderness if you don’t have another option. Stay on the trails my friends!

We were not worried though, we had the intensely beautiful sunsets, Tom’s twenty-year-old memory of the boy scouts handbook, and each other. Tom’s charming smile alone could keep me going as we walked for hours through the sweltering heat of the forest searching for our way back to the trail.

Now, the recipe we are making is specific to the sandwich. When you make your sandwiches, you can use pre-prepared braised pork from a deli or frozen food aisle. Making your own braised pork? Sweltering heat is not good for properly braised pork. Slow and steady wins the race my friends! I do recommend braising your own pork and don’t be afraid to braise it on the bone. I’m a firm believer that the flavors that are added from using the bones create an undeniably rich and impactful difference.

“Is it leaves of three let them be or…” Tom kept mumbling on our second day. We were so hungry we could eat fast food! Ha! Imagine, but we were able to whip up some interesting looking tubers and mushrooms that Tom was sure looked edible. A lot of people spurn mushrooms, but they can really be a treat if cooked right. We ate these ones raw and washed in the crystal clear pool of standing puddle water. The flavors were so intense I swear I could see the rainbow colors of sound and a mystical purple goat danced us to sleep.

We’re going to use some fairly standard American cheddar for our sandwich, nothing too sharp, but for that real tangy twist we’re going to add some goat cheese.

Now, you all know I love my hubby hub, Tom, but it was around day five that his attitude took a turn for the worse. Ladies, we all know how hangry our men can be without a proper meal. Honestly, I was getting a little hangry myself! In fact, Tom was looking less like the tasty snack he usually is and much more like a walking, talking, whining, pork chop. His sweet juicy limbs and thick chest full of muscle meat.

Some of the reasons I like this recipe is that it is not only easy it’s also budget friendly! Once you’ve cornered your source of meat and disable it with a hit it over the head from a termite infested branch you just need to spend a little quality time tenderizing. Tenderizing is important to break down tough connective tissue and it allows your flavors to really marinate in deep. Then let it simmer on a low heat source. I recommend digging a shallow pit so that you can properly dispose of the bones when you are done.

I digress! Another tip for this recipe is that, if you aren’t a big fan of apples, you can use pears which pair (see what I did there?!) nicely with the goat cheese.

It was another week before I was rescued, but I was certainly well fed by then. Some of the best food I’ve had in a long time; I won’t forget this trip anytime soon!

Unfortunately, they never found Tom.

My friends, my readers, if you can’t make it to Mankott Island to try the apple cider braised pork over corn grits then this recipe might just be the second-best thing.


  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 6 ounces shredded braised meat (bonus points for locally sourced!)
  • 2 slices Mild American Cheddar
  • 2 tablespoons goat cheese
  • 2 slices Jennilyn’s original sourdough
  • Spiced Apples (such as Pink Lady or Honeycrisp), sliced thin
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped fresh chives


Step 1

Lightly butter both sides of the bread and begin to heat on low in a skillet. Once lightly browned remove the bread and spread goat cheese on one side. Return the bread to the skillet, butter side down, and start heating the other side.

Step 2

Increase heat to medium-high. Lay your American cheese down and top with fresh slices of spiced apple (I like vanilla bean, cinnamon, and some cardamom, but feel free to play with your favorite summer flavors!)

Step 3

Top the apples with your shredded braised pork or pork substitute, chives, and a pinch of black pepper. (You can find a really great recipe for braised meat in my November archives.)

Step 4

Cover with your second piece of bread and press flat with a second skillet. You can also use a sandwich press.

Step 5

Serve with corn grits or your favorite summer salad. Enjoy your sandwich with a loved one… or maybe by yourself!

The End


About the Creator

Amos Glade

I'm Jeff Carter; I wanted a unique & personal pen name. Writing offers an opportunity to create and heal. These stories in the bizarre, horror, and magic realism help inspire me to move forward with novel writing. Thank you for reading.

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