Tony More’s grandson Grady was barely in the door of his grandfather’s house before peeking in the kitchen to see if the palomilla steaks were ready. “The kids eat it like fruit,” More says. The third-generation owner of Ybor City’s La Segunda Central Bakery (which opens a new South Tampa location on July 18) learned to make the traditional Spanish- Cuban recipe from his mother, and he still makes it her way for his seven grandchildren.
More purchases his top round steaks from Cacciatore and Sons in West Tampa and marinates them with just a bit of garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper, cooking them in a black iron skillet. He says, despite their simplicity, his whole family looks forward to eating his palomilla steaks. “There are not many dishes everyone likes,” More says with a chuckle.
For another simple meal the kids enjoy, he says, make Milanesa steaks by breading and frying the steaks then baking them with tomato sauce. He pairs the steaks with handmade papas fritas, using golden potatoes for their superior frying ability. Of course, at the center of the table is a plate of toasted La Segunda Cuban bread. More’s grandfather, Juan — a Spanish soldier — discovered the recipe for Cuban bread while fighting on the island during the Spanish-American War.
He immigrated to Ybor City and opened the bakery in 1915. Today, Tony More and his son, Copeland More, run La Segunda. “We can’t have a meal in this house without Cuban bread,” the elder More says. Even the youngest members of the family can identify the bakery’s bread on sight alone, he adds with a laugh. “The little ones ordered Cuban toast at a restaurant, and when it arrived, they said, ‘This isn’t our bread.’”
Palomilla Steaks Recipe
8 1/2 inch top round steaks
Pound steaks in ¼ inch pieces. Marinate steaks with lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper and layer in a glass baking dish for at least two hours in the refrigerator. Fry steaks individually in two tablespoons of olive oil in a hot iron skillet for a few minutes. Flip and cook the opposite side quickly so the meat does not toughen. Garnish with lemon wedges. Serves eight.
Slice golden potatoes as French fries. Cook in hot vegetable oil until they float, or about 10 minutes. More recommends using 10 potatoes for eight people.
La Segunda Central Bakery
2512 N. 15th St. | (813) 248-1531
NEW SOUTH TAMPA LOCATION
4001 W. Kennedy Blvd, Suite 4 | (813) 540-9119
Learn how to make authentic Cuban sandwiches from home.