Fried Plantains With Black Beans, Roasted Poblanos, Avocado, and Pickled Red Onion

[Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt]

Patacones are the Colombian equivalent of Caribbean tostones--double-fried green plantains. Just like cooking a french fry, you start with a starchy chunk of green plantain, cook it once at a low temperature, then cook it a second time at a higher temperature to crisp it up. The difference is that with patacones, you smash them into a flat disk in between. This shape makes them ideal for loading up with toppings. In this version, I go with black beans (canned are fine), roasted poblano peppers, slices of creamy avocado, and a few pickled red onions.

Fried Plantains With Black Beans, Roasted Poblanos, Avocado, and Pickled Red Onion

About This Recipe

Yield:Makes about 24 fried plantains, serving 4 to 6
Active time:45 minutes
Total time:45 minutes
Special equipment:Wok
This recipe appears in: The Vegan Experience Days 20 and 21: The Vegan Super Bowl Snack Challenge

Ingredients

  • 2 quarts vegetable oil
  • 4 green plantains, peeled and cut into 1-inch segments
  • 2 poblano peppers
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained
  • 1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles
  • 1 to 2 avocados, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 batch pickled red onions
  • 3 tablespoons freshly chopped cilantro

Procedures

  1. 1

    In a large wok or Dutch oven, heat oil to 300°F. Add plantains and cook until pierced easily with a knife, but not browned, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.

  2. 2

    Place poblano chiles directly over the flame of a gas burner or as close as possible to the broiler element of an electric oven. Cook, turning occasionally, until deeply charred and blacked on all sides and completely tender, about 8 minutes. Wrap with foil and set aside.

  3. 3

    Combine black beans and chopped chiles in a small bowl. Press with back of form to mash lightly.

  4. 4

    Carefully peel poblanos under cold running water (or if you can, peel them without rinsing them). Discard stem an seeds and slice flesh into thin strips.

  5. 5

    Smash each plantain under a metal can to about 1/4-inch thick. Reheat oil to 400°F. Add plantains (working in batches if necessary). Adjust heat to maintain a temperature of 350°F to 375°F. Fry, agitating occasionally, until plantains are golden brown and crisp, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and season with kosher salt.

  6. 6

    To serve, spread each plantain with some bean mixture, a slice of avocado, a few strips of pepper, some pickled red onions (along with a jalapeño or serrano slice from the pickles), and a sprinkle of cilantro.

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