If you’ve not ventured beyond Mexican in the realm of Latin American food, chances are you’ve never had tostones, deep fried plantain. That’s right, plantain, that “weird” not quite a banana looking fruit that you see in the produce section that you probably have always wondered, “What do people do with that?”.
Warm and buttery, crunchy on the outside and smooth and fluffy inside, they’re a high-calorie, high-carb food, but delicious, and well worth a once-in-a-while snack. Next time you’re craving potato chips, but wish they were more filling, try some fried plantain, you won’t regret it.
- 1 tbsp coconut oil, divided
- 1 plantain, cut into 3/4 inch pieces on the diagonal
- salt to taste
Start by peeling your plantain and slicing it into 3/4 inch pieces. I usually cut mine on the diagonal to increase the surface area while cooking. Once they’re all cut, heat a pan to medium heat and add 1/2 of the coconut oil to the pan. When oil is heated, place the plantains in the pan. As the plantains cook, the will deepen to a golden yellow color. When you see this color creep up the side, flip the plantain over and cook on the other side.
Once cooked on both sides, remove from skillet and place on cooling rack. Keep the skillet on medium heat and add remaining coconut oil. Place the fried plantain on a flat surface and use the back of a spatula to squish the plantain out flat. Try to squish it down to around 1/4 an inch. Don’t worry if plantain squishes out the sides, you want that. Return the squished plantain back to the skillet and cook on each side till golden brown. Remove from skillet and sprinkle with salt and eat.
Tostones can be cooked in advance and re-heated in the oven to bring back some of the crispiness. If you’re wanting to take this from a snack to appetizer level, serve the fresh cooked tostones with a side of guacamole and sour cream. Trust me, make these tostones once, and you’ll be hooked for life!