Green plantains that are fried, smashed and fried again are called tostones in some parts of Latin America and patacones in others. To make preparing these crispy bits of starchy deliciousness much easier, I recommend spending a few dollars on what is called a tostone press, which you can order online or pick up at your local Latin American grocery store. You can also use a sturdy glass or jar or even a flat meat mallet, too. Tostones can go well with just about any main dish or can be eaten as an appetizer or snack—think of them as hearty chips. Reprinted with permission from Latin American Paleo Cooking by Amanda Torres with Milagros Torres, Page Street Publishing Co. 2017. Photo credit: Toni Zernik
Slice the tips off the plantains with a knife, then cut 1 or 2 slits in the skin down the length of the plantain. If the peel does not lift off easily you can loosen it by soaking the plantains in a bowl of water with about 1 tablespoon (6 g) of salt for 10 to 15 minutes.
Slice the peeled plantain crosswise into disks . to 1 inch (2 to 2.5 cm) wide.
In a large skillet, heat your fat of choice over medium heat until shimmering, 3 to 5 minutes.
Carefully add the disks to the heated fat, cooking on each side for 2 to 4 minutes, or until they have turned a darker, more golden color. Do not allow to brown.
Remove the disks from the oil and flatten, using a tostone press (recommended) or a sturdy glass/jar or flat meat mallet. If using a tostone press, place the disk in the recessed circle and then clamp down the lid on top.
Return the flattened plantain disks to the hot oil and fry for an additional 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until crispy and browned. You will likely need to work in batches to fry the flattened disks. Add extra cooking fat as needed, because these will absorb quite a bit of fat as they cook.
Top with a sprinkling of coarse sea salt and a garnish of cilantro and serve immediately; tostones do not reheat well. Serve with your favorite main dish.
Recipe via tessadomesticdiva.com