Baked Patacones with Mojo Sauce (Tostones)
Since I married my husband Mr. C (almost three years ago, now!) I’ve been teaching myself how to cook the Colombian food he grew up with. Now that we have a little boy, I feel that it’s even more important for me to continue to grow in my knowledge of Colombian cooking. It is important to me that our son grows up knowing and appreciating his Colombian culture. In my opinion, food and language are two of the strongest ways to do this.
Enter the patacón. Patacones are green plantains that are cut and fried, then mashed and fried again. They have a potato flavor and they remind me a lot of french fries. They are served at virtually every meal in Mr. C’s hometown of Barranquilla, Colombia.
I’ve been hesitant to learn to cook patacones because deep frying food scares me. Not only is it splattery and difficult to control the temperature, but I’m trying to slim down and fried food is decidedly not the way to accomplish this. When I found a recipe for baked patacones on Skinny Taste, I was curious. (She calls them tostones — same thing). I was skeptical that these would hold together and taste like the patacones we are used to, and I was pleasantly surprised. They don’t taste exactly like the fried version (just as fried french fries don’t taste exactly like baked fries) but they are so close, and the trade off in convenience and health is worth it to me.
A word about the sauce shown here: Mojo is not a Colombian sauce but since we were eating the patacones on their own, I felt they needed something else.
Baked Patacones with Mojo Sauce (two generous servings) adapted from Skinny Taste
3 medium green plantains, peeled and cut in two inch pieces
3 tsp vegetable oil
salt (1-3 tsp)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Prepare baking sheets by spraying lightly with cooking spray
2. Mix plantains, oil and salt in a bowl until plantains are well covered
3. Place plantains on prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes
4. Remove plantains and smash until very thin. (To do this, place the plantain between two pieces of plastic and smash with a heavy pot or saucer)
5. Re-spray baking sheet and arrange plantains (baked side up) on the baking sheet.
6. Lightly salt the plantains and bake for 15 more minutes until golden brown.
7. Serve warm with mojo sauce (recipe below)
1/4 cup orange juice
1 T lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced
2 t. olive oil
1 t. cumin
pinch oregano, salt and pepper
1. Saute garlic in olive oil for two minutes until light brown
2. Add orange juice, lime juice, cumin, oregano salt and pepper
3. Bring to a boil and turn off flame
4. Allow sauce to cool to room temperature before serving.
A couple of hints/tips for this recipe
- Green plantains are very difficult to peel. The skin is tough and woody They look like bananas, but do not be fooled! To peel them, make a long vertical cut in the skin and slide the knife between the skin and plantain. Try to get the skin off in larger pieces.
- The patacones must be smashed while they are still warm, otherwise they will become brittle and broken