While it feels a bit odd to be putting out a recipe these days, we’ve made the decision that that’s what we need to do. Recipes and food are an adhesive; a tool to keep tradition alive and to trigger and maintain conversation. I mixed this simple tostones recipe up with a salmon tartare to make the traditional dish a bit more progressive and modern.
Originating in the Dominican Republic, tostones are a staple in Caribbean and Latin American households. The word tostones comes from the Spanish word tostón, slang meaning money during the colonial period. They are savory compared to they’re sweet cousin, the maduro. They’re crispy, golden discs typically served as an appetizer or as a side.
Tostones are fried twice. The first fry creates a golden color while keeping the inside soft. Using a wooden tostonera or any heavy bottom pan, you’ll smash the plantain into a perfect circle. Then the second fry is to create the crunchy tostones.
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Try these with dinner, diced and tossed into a salad, or as a base for ceviche. I added a recipe for Salmon Tartare below.
- 2 Unripe Plantains
- Vegetable Oil (for frying)
- Kosher Salt or Adobo Seasoning (see my recipe here)
- Trim and discard the ends of the plantain. Make a slit down the peel on opposite sides. Remove the peel and cut into 1-inch pieces.
- In a large skillet or cast-iron pan, heat vegetable oil over medium heat. Once the oil reaches temperature, 3 minutes. Place the plantains into the oil. Rotating each side until the plantain is golden brown.
- Let the plantains drain and cool for a few minutes on paper towels.
- Using a tostonera or a cutting board and a heavy bottom pan. Smash the plantain down. Making sure not to press too hard. Just enough to flatten into a disc, about ½ inch thick.
- Place flatten plantains into the hot oil and fry on each side for 2 minutes. Making sure the edges are crispy and the color is golden.
- Transfer back to paper towels to drain. Season with kosher salt or adobo.
- Enjoy warm.
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Salmon Tartare With Your Tostones
- 1 6oz piece of sushi grade salmon, cut into small dice.
- 1 avocado, cut into small dice
- ¼ fresh jalapeno, seeded, chopped fine
- 2 tablespoons minced red onion
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped,
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- Kosher salt & Ground black pepper
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- Add all the ingredients to a mixing bowl. Gently fold all the ingredients.
- Place tostones on a plate or serving tray and carefully add the tartare to each tostones.
- Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and cilantro.