Tostones Con Mojo

by Matt on October 20, 2010

You know what I realized I don’t eat enough of? Plantains. These banana relatives must be cooked before eaten, and their starchy potato-goodness is usually featured in African and Caribbean cooking. And while plantains can be used in stews or baked and served alongside fish and meat, my favorite way of eating them involves double frying them into tostones and dipping them into mojo, a garlic and olive oil condiment.  It’s a perfect snack or a great way to start a meal. You could even use the tostones to dip into a giant pile of guacamole*.

(*and for the record I want everyone to know that my dear friend Gaby of What’s Gaby Cooking is the only person I’ve met who is more addicted to guacamole than any other person I’ve met, present company included.)

Tostones Con Mojo adapted from Saveur

For the Tostones:
3 large green plantains
canola or vegetable oil for frying
sea salt

For the Mojo:
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
sea salt

Put crushed garlic and a pinch of salt into a mortar and crush into a paste. Add the chopped cilantro and crush a little bit more. Add the oil to the garlic, salt and cilantro and continue to mix to incorporate. Once mixed, put into a bowl and set aside.

Remove the skin from the plantain. It can be tough to remove, try slicing both ends off and making a slit with the knife the length of the plantain. With your thumb, wedge it between the flesh and peel and remove the skin. Once the skin is removed cut the plantains into 1-inch thick rounds.

Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet to no more than 350 degrees. Fry the plantains until lightly golden and then transfer to a paper towel to drain, about 3 minutes. With the bottom of a small pan or glass bowl, press the cooked tostones to flatten them to half their original thickness.

Return the flattened tostones to the hot oil and fry again until crisp around the edges and deeply golden. Once cooked transfer to paper towels to drain and then season with salt. Serve the tostones hot with the Mojo.

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{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

Gaby October 20, 2010 at 9:43 am

OMG you are amazing! Let’s make these asap together. I’ll bring the guac and the margaritas… and we will call it a day!!!!

Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking October 20, 2010 at 9:49 am

You know what, I don’t think I’ve ever had a plaintain. No time like the present, though! This looks like a very tasty, healthy snack… Thanks for sharing!

Mara October 20, 2010 at 9:52 am

Hay Dios mio, the only thing missing is the Mojito :)

The Culinary Chase October 20, 2010 at 10:01 am

Matt, these look scrumptious! I love plantains and the mojo. Will give this one a try. Cheers!

Sally - My Custard Pie October 20, 2010 at 10:04 am

The platain things look fab – must try and find some. Hands up – I’m a complete and utter guacamole addict – with lots of lime juice and salt.

shauna October 20, 2010 at 11:07 am

oh my lord, I am making these soon. you always make me hungry.

(by the way, if you’re having a guacamole-loving contest, I’m a contender. possibly the champion.)

Stella October 20, 2010 at 11:56 am

Yummy!!! Maybe I can inpress my salvadorian mother in law with this??? :-)

Melissa October 20, 2010 at 12:10 pm

Inspiration for today’s after school snack. Whadya think about baking them first and then frying (to brown and crisp)?

Karen from Globetrotter Diaries October 20, 2010 at 12:30 pm

YUUUUM. I too don’t eat enough plantains, may steal this one ;)

Idis October 20, 2010 at 12:40 pm

By far one of my favorite things to eat “Tostones” or as we call it in Panama “Patacon”. I will surely try it with the Mojo. Yummms! Thanks Matt.

Foodie October 20, 2010 at 12:57 pm

OMG, these pics make me so hungry, great job! I have given up my quest for low fat……it’s about the flavor.

Keri October 20, 2010 at 1:14 pm

These look amazing and for the record, I am ADDICTED to guacamole, too!!!

Brooke@foodwoolf October 20, 2010 at 2:46 pm

I’m not totally sure what Mojo is, but I think I’m already in love with it. I think my husband will come in a close third for Guacamole obsession, but we’ll all have to get together to test that theory!

Your mouth watering photos have me ready to chew on the corner of my lap top, btw. Thanks!

Lora October 20, 2010 at 5:38 pm

LOVE this. Yum.

The Italian Dish October 20, 2010 at 7:05 pm

I have a psychiatrist friend who was born in Puerto Rico and she made these for me for the first time a couple of years ago. I had never had them before. I honestly ate so many of these I felt sick.

God, they were good. I can’t imagine how great they would be with some guacamole.

Nicole Franzen October 21, 2010 at 6:09 am

I love fried Plantains! When I lived in the Caribbean I ate them all the time!

Sally October 21, 2010 at 9:26 am

Oh my god these look great!!

I love having Caribbean dinner parties, these are the perfect starter!!

Keyla October 21, 2010 at 9:48 am

Love your blog!! And love tostones even more! … a little trick to make them extra crispy and tasty, is to dip them in icy whater after the first fry, this will low down the temperature to shock them on the second, but have to be very carefull beacause the oil will splat ( I usually just first fry a bunch of them and just store them frozen)… Cubans also put a bit of garlic in the icy bath, which is just delish!

Lorilyn October 21, 2010 at 9:57 am

Haven’t had them in years! This is a must try, thanks for posting. I’m gnawing on my phone.

Heather Jones October 21, 2010 at 12:40 pm

You’ve made me homesick for my Puerto Rican grandmother she made these all the time.

Cookin' Canuck October 21, 2010 at 2:37 pm

Oh my! Now that’s a great way to enjoy guacamole.

Rocky Mountain Woman October 21, 2010 at 3:17 pm

I’m all over a new way to stuff myself with guacamole!

Sam Rice October 21, 2010 at 5:13 pm

This looks simple but I think this a delight! The green sauce is unusual but creative! I think I should try this out! It is good to see simple recipes for chef-wannabee’s like me to try.

jane (this week for dinner) October 21, 2010 at 5:22 pm

dude, I love tostones. my favorite Caribbean restaurant makes them served with guacamole made with chickpease smashed and mixed in. mmmm. so glad you posted this recipe – woo-hoo!

Amelia October 21, 2010 at 6:17 pm

Plantains are so underused and so delicious! Can’t wait to try this method…with guacamole?! YUM! This is my favorite simple way to eat them:

marla {family fresh cooking} October 21, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Guac, plantains, garlic – now that is a heck of a lot of mojo. Twice fried, geesh. This sounds fantastic Matt!!

EFT Tapping (Natalie) October 22, 2010 at 2:51 am

Matt, I love your site because your fabulous photography is always a treat for the eyes – and I get to imagine eating the delicious food in the yummy pics.


Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. October 22, 2010 at 8:28 am

This is a wonderful combo and beautiful photo!

Willi October 22, 2010 at 12:15 pm

Thank you so much for this recipe! I went to Cuba last summer and tostones and Maduros Fritos (fried ripe plantains…even better!) were my favorites. I ate them happily every day for three weeks. Your version looks completely authentic and I am so going to make them this weekend.

Kiran October 23, 2010 at 10:08 pm

Yum! I should feature my Indian version of a plantain recipe that involves cumin seeds and turmeric.

LimeCake October 24, 2010 at 12:05 am

i’d love to know what plantains taste like! we don’t have them in Australia. i’m guessing unripe bananas?

Matt October 24, 2010 at 8:14 am

Kiran, YES PLEASE! I’d love to know how to prepare that! It sounds amazing… wow.

Matt October 24, 2010 at 8:15 am

Yes actually, if you can imagine a not-so-sweet starchier banana!

SpiceFan October 25, 2010 at 2:25 am

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Monica October 26, 2010 at 11:41 pm

I so love your blog and am thrilled to read your new posts. People, places, food…life, through your eyes is beautiful!

måns jensen November 1, 2010 at 2:17 am

Lovely pictures, Matt!! …as always…

Shawn November 17, 2010 at 12:36 pm

Tostones (or patacones, as they call them in Barranquilla) are one of our favorites – one great preparation tip (from “real” pataconeras!) is to flatten the plantains on top of a plastic bag. Then, you can pick up the plastic bag and easily peel off the patacon from the plastic. Our favorite way to serve these is with butter and grated cheese. If you can’t find Colombian queso costeño, you can substitute mozzarella instead. Yum! A decidedly non-traditional–but very delicious–alternative is to serve with a garlic-dill-lime aioli.

Katie November 18, 2010 at 11:21 pm

Oh man, it’s been too long since I’ve had plantains, AND I suspect that I might fall in immediate love with mojo. Stoked!

Mary Ann Gilson January 23, 2011 at 12:56 pm

Saw this recipe and just knew I had to make them. They were so good, and I’m making them again today. True addiction, thanks. Love the blog.

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