YESTERDAY, the last day of Jason’s 3-day-business-trip to Hong Kong, Jiaozi/Dumpling pulled a performance of his life at 10 in the morning, in a theatrical masterpiece called – This Is It.  Good bye, mom and dad.  Limping and whimpering, wordless but powerful… his flawless craft of showmanship efficiently triggered a wild response from the only audience, and prompted an emergency change in Jason’s itinerary for an earlier return.  Then. This morning.  Suspiciously and miraculously so, he was moonwalking lively around his “feeding zone” – I’d imagine singing the Smooth Criminal – barking and dancing for his personally prepared chicken liver-rice.  Celebrating the success of his pathetic ploy… he ate a shit-load.

I know, I know that I shouldn’t project reasons and meanings behind animal behaviors when there’s probably none…  He’s just an cunning old, sneaky wavy-haired boy Maltese.  It’s just sometimes, it’s really hard not to do that.

But what does that have to do with today’s sandwich?  Absolutely nothing.




I could have told you that this was our little PTSD-snack, just to get the blood-sugar level back on track.  But it wasn’t.  I could have painted a nostalgic narrative siting back in childhood when my mom used to regularly make a pan-fried, pounded pork loin in scallion and soy sauce.  But no.  I hated that dish (sorry, mom).  I could even fabricate a story behind these sage-laminated cutlets, an Italian inspiration, based on our trip to Rome where we sat in an open piazza making wishes from a magnificent fountain, and oh, with the blessing of elegant European pigeons.  But don’t be silly.  Those fountains only grant juvenile public urination, and we mainly stuffed our face with burrata and gelato.

What this is, is just something I’ve been wanting to make.  A sky-high stack of paper-thin pork cutlets laminated with fresh sage leaves, pan-fried to golden brown then sandwiched between creamy avocados and arugula and anchovy green sauce on every single layer, and toasted sesame rolls.  What this is, is just something I’ve been wanting to call, the stacked green pig sandwich.  It’s a sandwich that has no story.  My grandma is nowhere involved, and it didn’t even come close to the freshness of grass in a summer picnic basket.  What this is, is just something that sounds great, and turned out really tasty.  And I suspect as well, that you would not need any rationing to enjoy it with a cold beer.

Sometimes good things happen for no reason or meaning.  Sometimes, it’s just, a really good thing.





Servings: 2 sandwiches

Pork loin is not pork tenderloin.  Pork tenderloin is a thin strip of meat, vs pork loin is thick with workable width.  Pork loin should range from 4″ ~ 5″ (10 ~ 12 cm) in width, and therefore can be pound into large cutlets.  It’s an ideal piece of cut because it has virtually no connective tissue, tendon or membrane which would make the pounding/flattening difficult.  The downside is that it is also completely lean and can be dry if overcooked.  The trick to avoid this is to cook the cutlets on one side only.  To get the desired browning on both sides of the cutlets is a 100% guarantee that they’d be overcooked.  Plus they are so thin that they really don’t need to be flipped.

Depending on your liking for spiciness, you can add 1 tbsp or more of pickled jalapeño in the green sauce.


  • Pork loin cutlets:
    • 15.5 oz (440 grams) of pork loin
    • 18 ~ 20 fresh sage leaves
    • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
    • Approx 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour for dusting
  • Arugula green sauce:
    • 1 cup (30 grams) of fresh parsley leaves
    • 1/2 cup (25 grams) of baby arugula
    • 6 sprigs of fresh thyme
    • 5 fillets of anchovies
    • 1 clove of garlic
    • 1 ~ 2 tbsp of chopped pickled jalapeño or green chili
    • 2 tsp of capers
    • 1/4 tsp of freshly ground black pepper
    • 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 ripen avocados
  • 2 sesame sandwich rolls
  • Parmigiano cheese for shaving
  • Lime to serve

To make the arugula green sauce:  Combine all the ingredients in a blender or food-processor, and blend until very smoothly pureed.  Transfer to an air-tight container until needed.

To make the pork loin cutlets:  Cut the pork loin into 1/4″ (7 mm) thick slices.  Lay them evenly on a large piece of parchment paper with at least 1 1/2″ (4 cm) space between each.  Cover with another piece of parchment paper, then with a meat-pounder (or even just a hammer), pound and flatten each slices into a bit thinner than 1/8″ (3 mm) thickness.  Use a toothpick to secure a leaf of fresh sage onto every cutlets, then season with fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper on both sides.

Season approx 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour with a pinch of salt and pepper.  Gently dab the cutlets with the sage-side only into the flour to very lightly coat the surface.  Dust off any excess flour and repeat with the rest.  Heat up 3 tbsp of olive oil in a large flat skillet over high heat.  Place the cutlets sage/flour-side down into the skillet, and cook until you see the bottom edges are golden browned, and the top side looks barely pinkish (they will further cook while resting).  Transfer to a plate, with the browned side up, and repeat with the rest of the cutlets.

To assemble the sandwich:  Preheat the broiler on high.  Smear a layer of arugula green sauce on each side of the sliced open sesame rolls.  Toast a few inches under the broiler until browned (this will happen quickly so watch out!).  Scoop the avocados out of the skin and disgard the pit.  Roughly smash it with a fork, season lightly with salt and pepper, then pile 1/2 of an avocado on each side of the bread (1 avocado for each sandwich).

Generously pile the pork cutlet into the sandwich as you apply a generous smear of arugula green sauce between each cutlets.  Top with some shaved Parmigiano cheese and a little squeeze of lime juice.


  • David

    July 31, 2014 at 7:52 PM Reply

    HULK SMASH (as in eat quickly)!!!~

  • thecitygourmand

    July 31, 2014 at 9:14 PM Reply

    What a tease.

  • Laurie Higgs

    July 31, 2014 at 9:25 PM Reply

    Looks freaking awesome..yum

  • Kevin

    July 31, 2014 at 9:29 PM Reply

    That lime squeeze in the end makes all the difference. I’m starving now… and the only cure is this sandwich!

  • Michelle @ Healthy Recipe Ecstasy

    July 31, 2014 at 10:09 PM Reply

    I’ve died and gone to sandwich heaven. It’s like all my favorite ingredients had an orgy and the result was the perfect sandwich baby.

  • Emma

    July 31, 2014 at 11:50 PM Reply

    I’m a long-time reader but a first-time commenter… but this just looks too good to not comment on. I have a maltese too, and he’s so conniving. Hope Dumpling gets better!

  • Rachael @ Spache the Spatula

    August 1, 2014 at 1:10 AM Reply

    No no no no, do not tempt me so. I need this in my life today and everyday.

  • steph

    August 1, 2014 at 1:21 AM Reply

    that photo of all the fried pork loins with sage leaves. i could just eat those and be happy :)

  • tara

    August 1, 2014 at 1:45 AM Reply

    This sandwich looks so freaking good and I can’t explain it but I’m lusting after it in a way that I feel like I need to slap somebody. Or somebody needs to slap me. I really hope that makes sense.

    Basically, I want to stuff this sandwich in my mouth right this second. Not only am I recently obsessed with arugula pesto/sauce but those cutlets? Seriously? Holy crap. So good.

  • Pang

    August 1, 2014 at 5:55 AM Reply

    Dumpling with MJ dance!!!! Way to go, D :)
    And THAT sandwich is so darn good looking. Mandy, you are a genius :)

  • Millie l Add A Little

    August 1, 2014 at 7:34 AM Reply

    My mouth is seriously watering. That green sauce though!!!! Mmmm do you deliver?
    Have a great day Mandy!

  • Abbe@This is How I Cook

    August 1, 2014 at 11:06 AM Reply

    Just as Jaotzi/Dumpling pulled a masterpiece, so did you! This is incredible.

  • Thalia @ butter and brioche

    August 1, 2014 at 11:30 AM Reply

    now THIS is how every sandwich should look! my mouth is just watering looking at all the images.. yum!

  • Ruth

    August 2, 2014 at 3:49 AM Reply

    Looks so hen hao chi I can hardly stand it! But don’t forget to remove the toothpicks. :0)

  • Crystal | Apples & Sparkle

    August 2, 2014 at 5:49 PM Reply

    Your posts kill it every time! Amazing looking sandwich!

  • sara

    August 3, 2014 at 2:12 AM Reply

    This sandwich looks AMAZING. Totally love it. Now I need to go get some pork loin!

  • ATasteOfMadness

    August 3, 2014 at 4:31 AM Reply

    I just ate lunch, and you still managed to make me hungry!

  • Joyce laferrera

    August 3, 2014 at 9:06 AM Reply

    Looks delicious.

  • Valentina @Hortus

    August 4, 2014 at 4:11 PM Reply

    You genius, you.

    That arugula sauce. That EVERYTHING. This is like the pimped version of an Italian Porchetta sandwich. #foodtruckproject #genius #drool

  • Rosanne Z

    August 4, 2014 at 9:23 PM Reply

    Made this for lunch today. Another delicious dish. Awesome.

    Mazeman planned for Thursday if I manage to buy the chicken wings today and make the broth tomorrow or Wed.

    PS – When are we getting a cookbook from you?

  • Emily

    August 5, 2014 at 12:27 AM Reply

    This is genius, I love everything about it.

  • Lisa Sarpolis

    August 6, 2014 at 7:32 PM Reply

    This looks amazing! I can’t wait to try it!

  • Greg

    August 6, 2014 at 9:29 PM Reply

    At what point do you remove the toothpicks? As soon as they come off the heat or once they have cooked a bit?

    • mandy@ladyandpups

      August 6, 2014 at 9:38 PM Reply

      Greg, haa I forgot that part! You can remove them once they are cooled slightly not to burn your hands :)

  • Chance

    August 7, 2014 at 12:02 PM Reply

    … My lady once served me bacon wrapped green beans. Very woody. Got through two before I discovered the toothpicks. Epic.

  • Billie

    August 8, 2014 at 11:09 AM Reply

    This green/pesto sauce was really delicious. It was a very messy sandwhich but totally worth it. This tasted great also even without the pork. This sauce recipe will be used quite often from now on.

    Thank you for sharing!

  • Oki Nyannor

    August 11, 2014 at 2:22 AM Reply

    This is crack on a bun, and I need my fix… now! :) I look foward to many more of your delicious posts!

  • Tam

    September 17, 2014 at 7:38 AM Reply

    In the middle of making this right now. I finished making the arugula sauce and had a taste. I’m already smitten! I’ll report back once I’ve finished what will probably be the sandwich of the year!

  • Laur

    November 7, 2014 at 11:29 PM Reply

    This is a fantastic sandwich. I love it. The green sauce is so good that I have taken to making it in large batches and using it as a condiment on my simple lunch sandwiches throughout the week- it makes everything better!

  • Sense13

    December 31, 2018 at 1:36 AM Reply

    We just finished our sandwiches. So good! Thank you! :D

Post a Comment