Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Tostones - Fried Plantains

Here's the second part of my Cuban meal that I have been meaning to post for days and days. My only excuse is that I was teaching, but this recipe was requested. I have to tell you, though, this is a super easy recipe. It requires only 3 ingredients - Plantains, Oil and Salt - that's it!  

Plantains are a part of the Banana family, but are not as sweet. In fact, when they green, they starchier and are more like Potatoes. When they are yellow, they have a light sweetness and a taste more like Bananas. Either way ,they are cooked in Cuba, Puerto Rico and many Latin American countries.  The trick is to cook them in hot oil. Make sure the oil is hot so that they won't absorb the oil. When they are browned, you remove them and then smash them so they get much thinner and you fry them again. Then you sprinkle them with salt and serve. If you need to keep them hot because you are doing multiple batches, place them in a warm (200 degree oven) until they are all cooked or if you need to hold them warm until everything else is done. They are delicious!

Tostones - Fried Plantains

2 large Plantains (Green or Yellow), peeled and sliced about 1/3 inch thick
1 cup vegetable Oil
1/4 teaspoon Salt

Heat the Oil in a large frying pan. Meanwhile, cover a plate in two layers of paper towels.  When the oil is slightly smoking, add in as many Plantain slices that will fit without being crowded. Cook until lightly browned. Turn carefully with a spatula or tongs and brown on the other side as well. Remove to the plate and add in remaining slices. Repeat until all are cooked.  

Then take a mallet and on a cutting board, take the coolest Tostones and smash lightly so that the edges get scalloped. Place back in the oil and cook until they are a deeper brown. Remove to another plate covered with paper towels. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Repeat until all are cooked and serve. 

Five Element Analysis

Plantains are a tropical fruit and they are starchy so they belong to the Earth Element. Therefore, they are grounding and pacifying. So, these are great with any meal that needs more of that element!

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