Tostones, have you had them? In a nutshell they`re salted twice fried plantains & very popular in Latin & South America as well as the Caribbean & Western Africa, pretty much anywhere you can find plantains. If you`ve not had them they should be added to your list of dishes to try. (very easy to make) Super popular as a side dish, snack or finger food they can be sweet & savory at the same time, delightfully crispy on the outside & pillowy soft inside. Now it also depends on how ripe your plantains are. The greener the fruit the more savory (similar to a potato) the end result & conversely the darker they are the more sweet they`ll be. A less sweet member of the banana family they transition from green to super ripe. (Black in color)
Here`s all you need for your Tostones, A Plantain Treat:
Plantains-3 peeled & sliced, 3/4-1 inch thick
Oil for frying
The plantains I used are somewhere in the middle of green & super ripe. I like the slight sweetness the semi-ripe plantains bring but it`s totally up to you. Want sweeter go darker. Want more of a potato kind of thing go greener.
Peel the plantains. Just cut the stem end off & run a knife down the seems only going through the skin & they`ll come right off. Cut the plantains in 3/4-1 inch slices.
Heat a pan with about 2 inches of cooking oil over medium heat. When hot add the plantain slices & cook for 2-4 minutes until golden brown. You`re not cooking them through here because you`re going to fry them again. Don`t let them get dark.
Remove to paper towels to drain & cool.
Now you`re going to flatten them to about 1/4 of an inch thickness. There`s actually a kitchen tool to do this called a tostonera but I don`t happen to have one. A glass with a flat bottom worked perfectly or try a tortilla press. Place the plantains between 2 pieces of wax paper & squish them.
Flattened & ready for the second fry.
Add the plantain chips back to the hot oil & cook for a minute or so. Turn them over & cook for another minute. Remove to paper towels to drain any excess grease. Add a sprinkling of Sea Salt & you`re Tostones are ready to eat.Really, you need to give these a try! Great as a side dish for any meat, chicken or fish or use them instead of tortilla chips & serve with your favorite salsa & guac. They`re also super delish naked!