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Pataconas with Hogao Recipe: (Hogao is a common ‘salsa criollo’ used for many things including dipping patacoas):
Very Green Plaintains, peeled and cut into one inch chunks
Canola or Vegetable Oil, enough to cover plantain chunks
2 tbsp oil
1 cup chopped green onion
2 cups of chopped tomatoes
1 chopped garlic clove
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
- Heat two tablespoons of the oil in a saucepan, add the tomatoes, scallions, garlic, ground cumin and cook gently for 10 minutes, stirring until softened.
- Reduce the heat to low, add the salt and , cook for 10 minutes more, stirring occasionally until the sauce has thickened. Check and adjust the seasoning. Keep warm.
- Pour enough oil to cover all patacon chunks into a high sided pot and heat over medium high (ensure the burner isn’t bigger than the pot) until it is at an angry bubble when you toss a small bit of plantain in.
- Fry chunks, moving them slightly to ensure they don’t stick, until they are a light golden brown (3-5 minutes). Remove.
- Let cool for three minutes and then smash with the bottom of your biggest mug—I find that those ‘Tostonera’ contraptions are less functional and also lame.
- Deep fry again for about two minutes, don’t let them get too dark.
- Plate them on some paper towels and sprinkle salt generously.
These can be served alongside almost anything or eaten alone with hogao sauce. I like them best when served with platters of rice, beans, steak and eggs. Hold a big one and shovel everything onto your fork before taking a chomp from each. The most elaborate of these platters is the Bandeja Paisa which includes white rice, frijoles, thin hanger steak, a fried egg, chicharrones, an arepa, and avocado. It also usually has platanos maduros but I always sub them out for pataconas because I need my salty shovel.
The ‘refajo’ I mentioned earlier is just an equal mix of one Colombiana soda and one lager beer. Pour them both into a pitcher; extremely refreshing.