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ABOUT THE WATER...the reason puertoricans dip in water is because we cut them up early while making the rest of dinner. When the plaintain sits in the kitchen it will turn brown after a while,so we put them in water salt, so it so it won't oxidize. It is not necessary if you are frying soon after you cut them up. The recipe says cut in chunks, but you SLICE the plaintain in 1.5 inch slices aprox. The oil should not be TOO high, just heat the oil a little above MED for 8 min before starting so it will be ready. Cook to soften them and then "squash" them flat and fry again. Oil and water don't mix, so dry them before frying, if you insist on water. Cast iron will get nice and black if you make tostones regularly. Sprinkle salt when done and serve with ketchup, garlic oil or top with garlic shrimp... there seems to be many other suggestions. I will try to post recipe for mofongo soon...yum!
Also known as Platanos Fritos o Patacones. I make these all the time but i do not soak them in water. I just peel the plantain, slice it crosswise about 1 inch thick, fry just a little (they'll look yellow-er), press in the tostonera (or with the bottom of a can) , fry again until cripsy and golden and then sprinkle with garlic salt. Yum!! Ignore the rating of the person who burnt them, that is not the recipe's fault.
I have made these all my life and I love them. A nice twist (and probably my favorite) is to make them with a ripe plantain (in which case they're called "amarillos". For making amarillos, the plantain must be at least yellow or almost throwing to "too ripe"--close to blackening skin). Cut the ripe plantain into diagonal, long slices and fry them--keep an eye on them because they cook much, much faster--turn around and they'll be burnt!--and drain on paper towels. You can serve these with anything and are great solo. Because they're made with a ripe plantain, they're very sweet. My fiance doesn't really care for amarillos, but I wouldn't have my plantains any other way. I would give both of these a 3 kid rating because, depending on the kid, he or she will love the tostones/amarillos or just hate them. I grew up with them, so I simply adore them!
Just a few observations: 1. If you want to have a toston that is made like those in Puerto Rico you have to have green plantains (oh, and a plantain is not a banana. They are related, but are not the same. A plantain is much larger and thicker than a banana, even the plants are different). 2. The slices should be cut diagonally so the initial frying can cover the most area. 3. If you don't have a tostonera, a can or a plate can be used to squash the slice, 4. Once it is squashed it is put in salted water for at least 30 minutes, not just to prevent it from going brown, but to give the toston a very good salty taste. 5. Last you fry it until golden brown. 6. Some people make mayoketchup mix (mayonnaise mixed with ketchup) or olive oil with salt, lemon, and garlic or just sprinkle with garlic salt. Hope this has clarified some issues with the recipe.
As a Puerto Rican, I know and love platanos as well. They're an easy side dish and can take the place of other sides, like rice or potatos. I don't bother with the water, just fry, smash, and re-fry. Just make sure you use the green plantains for this recipe.
Tostones taste great any time. Ask for Plantains at the supermarket in my experience they are qualitatively different than bananas dont exactly taste great raw. they are longer firmer like a cousin of the banana cooked while green for a firm crunchy taste or when yellow with brown spots for a sweet taste. Make a tomato and garlic sauce for dipping sprinkle with salt.. delicious! In some hardware stores you can find a tostonera look in latino catalogs for it it saves lots of time. its two boards with a circular indentation in the middle made to squish the plantain in a perfect circle.
Great recipe. Use the green plaintains as a savory side- as it is not sweet yet. Use cajun seasoning at the end for a kick. Use the dark colored (black) plantains for a sweet dessert or balance to your meal. Sprinkle w/ just a little cinnamon dark sugar and nutmeg. For both green or dark plantains try the thousand island recipe or buy store bought. After frying flatten between wax paper w/ a roller. I do not dip in cold water because I will set my house on fire.
I love PR cuisine! I have learned alot from a neighbor of mine and when we have these we make it with what she calls a secret sauce. The sauce is about 3 cloves crushed garlic,mayo and ketchup. Add to your taste along with a lil salt and pepper soooo good with the tostones!! Serve along side any dish or by their self awesome!!!
I LOVE TOSTONES!!! To peel plantains: cut ends off then cut down one side then peel skin off while running under water. For a little sweetness and tang use plantains that have some dark spots. A fully ripe plantain (black) is too soft for this recipe but experiment for different flavors (green is savory like potato). You can either skip the water step or dry thoroughly to avoid oil splatter. Dip them in crema fresca (Mexican table cream) for an added treat.
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