Puerto Rican/Dominican Eats: Mofongo

MOFONGO

Mofongo, a dish of garlicky mashed plantains, is one of the most popular dishes in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. It has clear roots in the fufuof West Africa. There are loads of West African influence in dishes that are found in the Caribbean. The mix of spices (adobo) and the use of starches like green banana, plantains and cassava is by way of Ghana and Nigeria.

Living in New York City, you have the advantage of having access to some of the best Puerto Rican and Dominican restaurants outside of those Caribbean islands. I can think of around 3 or 4 spots (restaurants) on Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn where I can find amazing mofongo. Recently, I took a visit to a Dominican restaurant located on the corner of Flatbush and Foster Avenue and found that they had amazing chicken mofongo.

 

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My mofongo from the small gem of a restaurant on the corner of Flatbush and Foster Avenues in Brooklyn.
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Shredded chicken can be found throughout the mashed plantains. The mofongo is served with a side of lettuce and tomatoes and a side of savory chicken gravy. (The gravy is essential for dipping the mashed plantains in in order for flavors to be soaked up and enjoyed.)

 

Mofongo normally can be ordered with shredded pork or chicken seasoned in amazing garlicky seasoning and served with gravy of your choice so that you can soak up all of the flavors with the starchy plantain. I have also had the most amazing seafood (shrimp) mofongo in Puerto Rico and can find shrimp mofongo just as amazing at El Viejo Yayo on 5th Avenue in Brooklyn (next to the Barclays Stadium).

Check out this amazing recipe found on Whats4eats and try to create your own mofongo: 

Makes 4 to 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

  • Green plantains, peeled and cut into rounds on the diagonal; around 4 of them
  • Olive oil; 3 tablespoons
  • Garlic, minced; 3 to 5 cloves
  • Pork cracklings (chicharrones), crushed; 1 cup
  • Salt to taste

METHOD

  1. Soak the plantain pieces in a bowl of salted water for 15 to 30 minutes. Drain well and pat dry.
  2. Heat the oil in a sauté pan or skillet over medium flame. Working in batches, sauté the plantain slices until they are cooked through but not yet browned, 10 to 12 minutes. (Saute the garlic in approximately 1 teaspoon of oil before adding to plantain mixture).
  3. Add the plantains, garlic and a little bit of olive oil to a large mortar or bowl and mash with a pestle or potato masher until fairly smooth. Alternatively, pulse with a food processor. Stir in the pork cracklings or shredded pork loin and salt to taste.
  4. Using moistened hands, form into 3-inch balls or mound on a plate and serve warm.

Find recipe at : http://www.whats4eats.com/vegetables/mofongo-recipe

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