Saturday, November 15, 2008

My Kitchen, My World: Puerto Rico

This week the MKMW group traveled to Puerto Rico, courtesy of Lauren, of I'll Eat You. Several years ago I had the opportunity to spend a week in Puerto Rico. The first few days, we stayed in a B&B in Old San Juan, walking all over the city, enjoying the sights, and touring interesting places. Then, we got our rental car and spent several days driving all over the island, from end to end and top to bottom. I know I have photographs buried somewhere, so I'll have to continue searching, but we did have a fabulous time, playing in the mountains and the oceans and the tropical forests. And, of course, food was part of that experience.

For my dining pleasure tonight, I decided to marinate two boneless chicken breasts in this:

The actual marinade consisted of 1 ounce rum (hand carried back from the Bacardi distillery in San Juan, I might add), 1 ounce soy sauce, 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger, 1 tablespoon minced onion, 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, 1/3 teaspoon dry mustard, and a couple of pinches of crushed red chiles.

The chicken breasts were marinated for 4 hours, then baked at 350 degrees F for 25 to 30 minutes, or until tender and cooked through.

Meanwhile, I took one of these:

No. It's not a banana. It's a plantain, and I turned it into tostones. I peeled the plantain, then made inch thick diagonal slices and sauteed them, flat ends down, until brown on each side. Because of the sugar content, you must watch carefully so they don't burn. When the slices were browned, I removed them, drained them on paper towels, then took my handy-dandy custom-made wooden mallet and mashed them flat. After creating the little plantain patties, I put them back into the frying pan, and cooked them until they were golden brown. Upon removal, I put them back onto paper towels to drain, then sprinkled them with salt.

To plate, I served the chicken with rice and the tostones, topped with sour cream and some minced green onion.

I have to declare, that while the chicken was tender and flavorful, those tostones were out of this world! I will definitely make them again, and maybe use two plantains instead of one.

Now, I'm looking forward to seeing where we travel this coming week.


Elra said...

That must taste heavenly. I love plantain, I eat lots of plantain when I was growing up.

Michelle Dargen said...

Judy, this looks fantastic. I will have to try the tostones. Yum!

Natashya said...

I had plantain for the first time in our Mex mkmw. I had found a tostonera (wooden tostone press) at an Asian market for $5 and was excited to make them. I had only seen them on Simply Delicioso before that.
I agree, they taste sooo good. So much better than fries.
And the chicken - yum! I will definitely bring the drinks, see you soon!

Megan said...

I've never had a plantain before - but anything served like that gets my vote!

And the chicken - oh yeah!! I remember carrying a bottle of rum home from our honeymoon on Barbados.

Lauren said...

i really wanted to make tostones, but couldn't put my hands on a plantain this weekend. looks so good!