It’s Hispanic heritage month! Hispanic heritage month is from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. We celebrate this Hispanic heritage month for all the history, contributions, love, and influence the latin culture brings to this country. As a latina, I wanted to join this celebration by sharing my family’s recipe for Tostones! There is nothing more Hispanic and hearty, toasty, and full of flavor as tostones. And there is no one I’d rather be making these other than with my sweet grandma, Doris. These tostones are twice fried, garlicky, and salty. They are the perfect snack or pair to a meal. They can be eaten alone or with a sauce of your choosing. Either way you eat them, they are incredibly delicious. Enjoy!
3 green plantains
4 large garlic cloves
Wash your produce. Peel the garlic and the plantain.
** Keep in mind that when plantains are green, they are hard and tough. To peel the plantain, you must have a small, but sharp knife. Cut both ends off of the plantain. Then, take the knife and make slits on the edges of the plantain. Be very careful not to cut yourself. After the slits have been made one each side, you will use the knife to pry open the skin of the plantain and then pull it off to finish peeling it.
Once the plantain has been peeled, heat up your pan with the oil. You will want to pour enough oil to cover the entire base of the pan. While the oil heats up, cut the plantain into elongated ovals. I would cut them about ½ an inch thick.
**If you do not like thick plantains and want something more like plantain chips instead, you can use a cheese slicer/grater to make thinner slices (see picture on the right). If you do this, make sure you only fry them once and just add salt afterwards. If you want them garlicky see below on how to make the garlic mixture, but again, you would only fry them once.
Once your pan is hot, place the plantains in the pan. Cook until both sides have slightly golden.
While the plantains cook, take your peeled garlic and smash them down to create a paste. I usually use a kitchen mallet to push the garlic flat. Other people use the mallet and literally beat the garlic into a paste. Do whichever you prefer. Once you have created the paste, add salt and mix it all well. Make sure you are mixing it all on a flat surface like a table or cutting board. Set garlic mixture aside for after the first fried batch of plantains.
Once your plantains have turned slightly golden on both sides, take them out of the pan and dab some of the oil off. Carefully (they will be very hot) place each individual plantain round on top of the garlic mixture and with the kitchen mallet, press (or smash) the plantain down into the garlic. This technique literally compacts and combines the garlic mixture and the plantain together. I always flip the plantain over and get a little bit of garlic on that side too. Just be sure you do not press the plantain too hard because it could cause it to crumble.
Once you have the garlicky plantains, place them back into the hot pan. Fry them once again until both sides are golden. When you take them out of the pan, you can use a wire rack or paper towels to help dry up any excess oil. Add a little more salt, to taste, and done. Enjoy!!