Sunday, December 26, 2010

Mama's Tostones (Plantains)

The holidays conjure up all sorts of memories of family meals. I write a lot about my Granny's recipes. But today, my mom and I had the pleasure of making one of her mother's specialties, Mama's Tostones.

Mama was from the Dominican Republic, so in addition to Granny's amazing Italian food, I had the luxury of experiencing "Island Food" as I grew up.

Many of you have probably enjoyed traditional Fried Plantains, which are sweet. Tostones are a salty version of plantains. Plantains are high in Fiber, Potassium and Vitamin A and C. And they're delicious. To make Tostones:

1. Slice into the skin without hitting the meat with your knife. Slice it lengthwise in a few spots so you can peel the skin off.

2. Cut the plantains into 1 inch chunks.

3. Heat Canola oil in a frying pan.

4. Lightly brown both sides of the plantain chunks.

5. Put the browned chunks on a paper bag. (I know that sounds weird. Just go with it.)

6. When the plantains cool, put another paper bag over the pieces and press down hard on each slice until it's as flat as you can make it.

NOTE: It's important to use paper bags because paper towels shred.

7. Put the flattened Tostones back in the frying pan. Brown them again.

8. Place the Tostones on a plate covered with a paper towel (so the oil drains). Salt them immediately.
NOTE: By salting immediately, the salt sticks to the oil on the plantains.

9. Enjoy the Tostones by themselves or dip them in guacamole for an extra treat!

What family foods do you love?



  1. yum! I love plantains. I was in Panama during my stent in the Army and I had lots of them.
    Your photos made me lick the screen of my new mac. Apple hasn't figured out to do taste yet, but I hear it's in the next release.

  2. WOW. I've never heard of those but they sound like they'd be delicious.

  3. OMG I absolutely LOVE tostones. I get them at this Cuban restaurant in Morristown with mojo. Thanks for a real and authentic recipe! :-)