(Caribbean fried plantains)
Tostones, twice-fried green plantains, are a favorite snack and side dish in Puerto Rico, Cuba and the Dominican Republic. Haitians call them bananes pesées, or banan peze. They are also eaten in Central America and throughout South America. In Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela they are known as patacones.
Use only green, unripe plantains for this dish. They have a higher starch content and will get more crispy in the hot oil. A tostonera is a small device that is used in the Caribbean to flatten the plantains for their second frying. Any sturdy flat surface works just as well. Or try using a tortilla press.
6 to 8 servings
- Green plantains, peeled and sliced diagonally into 1-inch pieces -- 2
- Oil for deep frying
- Heat about 1/2-inch of oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the plantain slices to the hot oil and fry, turning frequently, until they begin to brown on all sides. Remove to a paper-towel-lined plate and repeat with the remaining slices.
- When all the slices have been fried, use a glass or small plate to press each slice to a thickness of about 1/3-inch.
- Return half the flattened slices to the hot oil and fry again on each side until well browned and crispy. Drain on paper towels and repeat with the remaining flattened slices. Serve hot with mojo garlic sauce.
- Sometimes the plantains are soaked in salted water for about an hour and then dried well before sautéing. This is said to make them crispier and add flavor.