TOSTONES (fried green plantains, about 24)
3 green (unripe) plantains – plantains should be fried the day they are purchased, but they can be kept, wrapped well in a plastic bag and chilled, for 2 or 3 days
vegetable oil for deep frying
- With a small, sharp knife cut the ends from each plantain and cut a lengthwise slit along the inside curve. Beginning in the center of the slit, pry the skin from the plantain and cut the flesh crosswise into 1 inch thick pieces.
- In a deep fryer or large deep skillet heat 1-1/2 inches of oil to 375* on a deep-fat thermometer, in it fry a batch of the plantain pieces for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes, or until they are pale golden, and transfer them with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain briefly.
- Working quickly, using a tortilla press or the flat bottom of a glass, flatten each pieced, cut side up, between sheets of waxed paper to a thickness of no less than ¼ to 1/3 inch. Refry the flattened pieces in the 375* oil, turning them occasionally, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until they are golden. Transfer them with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain and season them with salt. (The tostones should be crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside). Fry remaining pieces in batches in the same manner.
- The tostones are best served immediately, but they can be made up to 1 day ahead, wrapped well in plastic bags, and reheated on a rack in a shallow baking pan in a preheated 450* oven for 3 to 5 minutes. Serve with sauce au chien.