Carey Jones
June 22, 2017

It's not exactly the hamburger we're used to. But in China, the "rou jia mo"—translation, "meat sandwich"—dates back way beyond McDonald's and its ilk. Probably by a couple millennia. Originating as a street food sandwich in the Shaanxi Province, it's now a favorite all over China.

At José Andrés’ Mexican-Chinese melting pot China Poblano in Las Vegas, the Rou Jia Mo takes on a few unusual flavors.

"My team and I first tried the Rou Jia Mo for breakfast one day while traveling through Beijing," says acclaimed chef Andrés. "We got it from a popular street vendor called Ping Wa, where there was a man chopping the meat with an enormous cleaver, and he would slice open the bread and stuff the meat inside. I loved the performance behind it and knew it would be perfect for Vegas."

The bread: The team at China Poblano created bread that's loosely based on naan, but with the addition of yeast so it's no longer a flatbread, rather something lighter and airier. "The softer dough is perfect for soaking up the red-braised meat," according to Andrés.

The filling: Red-braised pork takes the starring role -- with pork skin, black bean soy, and Mexican cinnamon all in the braise. "We also add a touch of Mexico with Mexican crema," says Andrés. "It’s incredible!”

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