Want to skip the traditional chips and salsa? Then you have to try this.
Platanutres (plantain chips) are a popular snack in Puerto Rico. They are known as mariquitas in Cuba, trompetas in the Dominican Republic, and chicharitos de plátano verde in Costa Rica. Versions also exist in India, where the chips are often cooked in coconut oil, and Southeast Asia, where it is common to rub them with turmeric and salt before frying.
Not to be confused with the popular rum cocktail, Mojito Isleño is a Puerto Rican sauce normally used as a topping for seafood dishes; specially grilled or fried fish such as the Red Snapper. It is also used as a side dipping sauce for tostones and platanutres. This sauce was originated in the southern town of Salinas which is known as “La Cuna del Mojito Isleño” (the cradle of the islander dip).
There are hundreds of different recipes; however, the basic ingredients are the same. The main difference you will find it’s in the level of heat. Some people make it spicy, others don’t. Either way, it’s very tasty and very versatile. You can prepare it overnight and keep in the refrigerator for a couple of days.
Total time – 25 min
Yields – plenty of chips…
- 4 green plantains
- ½ cup olive oil
- 2 medium-large green bell peppers, seeded, trimmed and chopped
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 8 teaspoons crushed garlic
- 1 medium bunch cilantro, washed and chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups canned tomato sauce
- Hot sauce of your choice to taste, optional
- ½ cup chopped pimento-stuffed green olives.
For the Mojito Isleño
Heat pan over medium heat, pour in oil and sauté bell pepper and onion until they begin to soften.
Add garlic and cilantro, salt and pepper. Cook five minutes over low heat.
Add tomato sauce and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Add hot sauce, if desired.
Before removing from heat, add olives. Cool and refrigerate.
Serve in bowl
For the Platanutres
Trim off both ends from each of the plantains with a sharp knife, then make a few slits through the skin the length of each plantain. Push your thumb between the skin and the flesh and pry skin away from flesh. It will come off in pieces, like bark from a tree. Trim off any woody fiber stuck to plantains. Slice plantains crosswise into thin rounds.
Pour oil into a large heavy skillet to a depth of 1/2”, then heat to 350° on a candy thermometer over medium-high heat. Add plantain slices a few at a time to the oil to prevent them from sticking to one another, and fry them in batches until lightly golden and crisp, about 3 minutes.
Transfer plantain chips with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Season to taste with salt while still hot and serve them in a chip bowl next to the Mojito Isleño.
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