Plantains are an integral part of our diet in the Caribbean as well as in Latin America. Boiled, steamed, fried and mashed, we’ve got various ways to prepare this cousin of the banana. Growing up on the islands boiled ripe plantains was a key component to the spread our mom would put out for our Sunday lunch (biggest meal of the week in most Caribbean islands). These day when I hit my favorite Jamaican restaurant, the man have the nerve to ask me with his raspy voice “wha plantain with dat?” (every freaking time). Man don’t waste my time, you know that I WANT fried plantains! Besides if the meal comes with plantains, you know you need to put it in my container (I pay for dat!).
2 green (unripe) plantains
vegetable oil (for frying)
Notes: You’ll need green (fully matured) plantains. I used about 2 cups of vegetable oil for frying and the amount of sea salt you need will be based on your tolerance for salt(just a pinch for me). I used a can and some parchment to press the once fried plantains into the tostone shape. There’s an actual tostone press you can purchase for this, but I find the can works great.. you can even press with your hands if you want, just be sure they’re cooled before you do.
Trim off both end of the plantain, then discard. Using a pairing knife, run a cut length-wise along the natural ridges of the plantain (as deep as the thickness of the skin), then using a butter knife, place the blade in the cut we made and peel back the skin. Depending on how freshly picked (harvested) your plantains are they may have a sort of white cloudy sap as you cut the skin. Wear gloves or rub some vegetable oil on your hands to protect them. Especially if you have sensitive skin. Finally cut the peeled plantains in 1 inch pieces and set aside in a bowl of cool water so they don’t discolor.
Put the oil to heat in a fairly deep sauce pan and heat on med/high. Drain the plantain pieces (if you had them in water) and pat dry with paper towels. All we have to do now is to fry them in hot oil for about 4 minutes in total.. be sure to flip them so they cook on all sides. Drain on paper towels and allow them to cool for a couple minutes before we press then and fry for a second time.
Here’s where we’ll now need a bit of parchment paper and a can ( I used a can of soup). Fold the paper in 2 and place a piece of the fried plantain on it, then flip the other piece to cover it. Using a little force, press down with the can to flatten it.
All you have to do now is give them a minute or 2 back in the hot oil, drain and sprinkle on a bit of seas salt and enjoy. If you like potato chips you’ll love these tostones with it’s sort of sweet undertones and crispy edges. They can be enjoyed on it’s own, with your favorite dip or as a side to any dish you normally serve.
Now on to the cookbook giveaway….
Yes, it’s that time again. I’ve got a wicked cookbook to give away to one lucky reader and I’m hoping it’s you. Each recipe comes with a beautiful picture so you know what the dish is supposed to look like, simple step by step instructions and best of all.. they’re very easy to put together. All you have to do is tell me which is your favorite chicken recipe I’ve shared to date (click on recipe index at the top of this page to see the full list) in the comment section below and your name will be automatically entered..
There are two bonus ways you can have your name entered in the contest, giving you 3 chances at winning. Along with leaving a comment below, go to the Facebook fan page and/or the Youtube cooking channel and leave a comment there.
Here are the rules pertaining to winning this cookbook.
– contest is open to everyone globally (even if you won something here before)
– there are 3 ways to enter your name (see above)
– 1 winner will be chosen at random (if you left 3 comments, your name will be entered 3 times)
– contest is open from January 29– to midnight February 25.
– winner will be announced within 1 week of the official close date.
– the winner will have 1 week to contact us with their mailing address
– we will cover all shipping expenses (standard mail)
I hope you take a moment to enter your name as I’d really like to mail this wonderful cookbook out to you. It’s simple, free and fun!