Tostones are twice-fried plantains. For Americans and some Europeans, potato chips (crisps) or french fries are a staple; for Dominicans and other Latin Americans, tostones are a comparable staple. Puerto Ricans consume plantains regularly (the main ingredient for tostones) and they are an essential food found throughout much of Latin American and the Caribbean. Tostones (also known as patacones) are just one of the many ways that plantains are cooked and eaten in the Caribbean. For example, they are often found as crispy chips, as a mash (Mofongo), in stews, or pan-fried when their skins are a deep black to make sweet maduros (fried sugary sweet plantains).
Tostones- Fried Plantains
- Large heavy-bottomed skillet
- Tortilla press or heavy skillet
- 2 large Green plantains
- 1 tbsp Sea salt
- 3 cups Water
- 2 cups Neutral cooking oil (canola, safflower, or vegetable)
- Prepare Plantains – Slice ends off plantains and make 3 long vertical cuts along the skins of each. Under running water, peel away each vertical cut from the sides, Cut each peeled plantain crosswise into ¾-inch slices with a sharp knife. Dissolve salt in 3 cups of cold water. Add plantain chunks and leave for ½ hour.
- First Cook – Heat oil over medium heat until hot, 325°F (160°C). In batches, cook plantain chunks for 4 minutes on each side until golden brown. Drain on paper towels,
- Second Cook – Flatten each chunk by standing it on one end, covering with parchment paper, and smashing it down to ¼-inch disks with a heavy object or tortilla press. Increase heat to medium-high and when hot (350°F/180°C). After all the plantains have been smashed, fry them again until golden brown and crispy, about 1 minute per side. Remove to paper towels and immediately salt them. Serve hot.