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Hold the phone. Have you had tostones yet?! Also known as smashed twice-fried plantains, I am soooo down for these little gems. Since you all know by now how much I love my carbs (real, whole food forms of carbohydrates of course!) and I am always looking for ways to switch things up.
I have been making tostones ever since I was introduced to plantains about 5 years ago. Growing up in Minnesota didn’t lend itself well to experiencing other culture’s food and exotic ingredients so as soon as I tried a plantain, I was hooked! Starchy and slightly sweet, plantains are on rotation in my household every week. I shared a blog post a few weeks ago on how to cook basic plantains (find it here) and thought I should share my favorite way to cook plantains!
Tostones are typically cooked in a mixture of vegetable oil or coconut oil. Since absolutely no vegetable oil is allowed anywhere near my kitchen or body (read more on that here) I love to use a blend of coconut oil and ghee. You could use all coconut oil or all ghee but I find that a blend of the two is a sweet spot for me! Too much coconut oil can easily overpower the naturally sweet plantain flavor and makes it feel a bit too tropical for me.
One of the most important aspects of this dish is the temperature of the pan before and during cooking. It is really important to have your pan and oil at the correct temperature before putting the plantain slices in. If the pan and oil are not hot enough, the plantains will just soak up oil and be soggy and have a heavy mouthfeel.
Tostones aka Twice-Fried Plantains (Paleo)
(PALEO, WHOLE30, GLUTEN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE)
YIELD: ~ 1 cup SERVES: 2-3
PREP TIME: 5 MINUTES COOK TIME: ~15 MINUTES
2 plantains, not fully ripe and green in color
¼ tsp. sea salt
- Heat a medium sized cast iron skillet or ceramic pan over medium heat.
- Add in fat of choice – I tend to use around 6 tablespoons because I want a nice coating in the pan, about 1″ deep.
- Cut plantains into 1″ coins and place in skillet with ghee and coconut oil once fully heated, taking care not to crowd them, you might need to work in two
- Let cook 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown.
- Remove from heat and place onto a paper towel to get rid of excess oil, using either a plate or bottom of a cup, lightly press down on the plantains to create a smashed effect.
- Place back in the skillet or pan and cook an additional 2-3 minutes until golden brown on all edges and crispy looking.
- Place back on a paper towel to remove any excess oil and immediately top with sea salt.
- Enjoy as is or make some guacamole to go with! YUM!
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