Tostones (Twice-Fried Plantains)

Tostones (Twice-Fried Plantains)

Let me tell you a story about love and tostones

I have read with a smile on my face the accounts of our readers who have found our sites useful when introducing their foreign spouses to Dominican food, or who want to learn about Dominican cooking to the delight of their Dominican spouses. I must confess now that our website has helped me as much as it has helped our readers.

When my now-husband first arrived in the Dominican Republic he didn’t immediately become a fan of Dominican food. The stereotypical image of what Dominican food is (or isn’t) didn’t help much: he thought Dominican food was all about rice and beans. Cooking at home became a tour de force: a conflict between my ability to cook dishes that were better known throughout the world, and my regular craving for Dominican food.

Tostones (Twice-Fried Plantains)

Now my husband has taken it upon himself to become a self-styled expert on Dominican food, after all, being Aunt Clara’s husband bears some responsibilities, I suppose. Little by little he has learned to appreciate our cuisine and has even shown an interest in learning how to prepare some of our dishes.

I do not think that he will ever get to like mondongo—but hey, I don’t eat meat so I can live with that. Chances are he will never understand our love for habichuelas con dulce or agree to even try carne de chivo; but I find pleasure in the fact that he considers some of our dishes as his favorite food. After all, it means that our blog has made another another Dominican food fan.

Tostones (Twice-Fried Plantains)

Every time we receive a letter thanking us for our blogs I remember that I should be thanking our readers too. Your letters and constant support have made this job easy and enjoyable for us; I suppose that I should also thank our readers because in a way you are responsible for our marital bliss.

If you also have a reluctant spouse, do not despair, be patient, eventually they all fall. You would not believe the powers of a hot asopao on a rainy day. I just hope that when the groom said “I do”, free tostones wasn’t the only thing he had in mind.

So, what are tostones?

Dominicans’ favorite side dish, tostones are slices of plantain, fried, flattened, then fried again. It is the side dish of choice, and welcome at street food stands and at Dominican dinner tables.

They are also known as fritos verdes (green fries) in the Dominican Republic.

Buen provecho!

Aunt Clara
Tostones Recipe (Dominican Twice-Fried Plantains)
 
Prep time
Cook time
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Tostones (Dominican Twice-Fried Plantains) is, without doubt, Dominican's favorite side dish. Learn how to make them with this simple step by step recipe.
Author:
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 unripe plantains
  • ½ cup of oil
  • 1 teaspoon of coarse sea salt, or to taste
Instructions
  1. Peel the plantains and cut into 1 inch thick slices.
  2. In a deep frying pan heat the oil and fry the plantains till golden.
  3. Flatten the plantains using a tostonera to about a third of an inch thick.
  4. Fry the plantains again until golden yellow on both sides.
  5. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Serve immediately.

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{ 25 comments… add one }

  • Emma August 21, 2014, 4:54 PM

    Can you use overripe plantains and still have the same results?

    • Aunt Clara August 31, 2014, 2:15 AM

      No, they definitely need to be unripe to be tostones. You can fry them ripe, but that’s a different dish.

      • Emma September 1, 2014, 12:04 AM

        Thanks so much!

  • Judy August 2, 2014, 6:12 PM

    I was in Dominican republic a few months ago and looked forward to eating tombstones. They said (at the resort where we stayed) that they had never heard of them. I was so disappointed. Guess I should have called them frito verses.

    • Aunt Clara August 7, 2014, 3:10 PM

      Tombstones? That is something completely different.

  • Judy June 5, 2014, 11:45 PM

    My husband is Dominican and I love his mothers cooking, one of my favorites tostones. Can’t wait to make them myself.

  • Laura May 5, 2014, 8:37 PM

    Hello! Really enjoying your site! Can tostones be served cold the next day? I’d like for my son to bring it to school in the morning for a project he’s doing on the Dominican Republic.
    Thanks!!!

    • Aunt Clara May 6, 2014, 8:24 PM

      Unfortunately, no. They are pretty bad the next day. Best eaten freshly fried.

  • Maxine May 5, 2014, 5:28 PM

    I’ve had it with fried pork and enjoyed them both love your Spanish food I’m Vincentian I like your site.

  • Bil February 25, 2014, 8:35 PM

    OK. Well,…I bought two large green plantains yesterday and was looking for a way to prepare them and here I am. WOW! Simple and tasty,……….I’m using Lingham’s hot sauce with ginger and garlic for the dip. Totally yummy. I’ll be making this again and soon. Thanks for recipe!

  • Lisa February 7, 2014, 2:24 PM

    I smash mine with the peel of the plantain, then dip in cold salted water before the second fry, also make a dip using garlic, vinegar and a bit of sazon.

  • Dina April 23, 2013, 12:15 PM

    they look yummy!
    Dina recently posted..Two for Tuesday: Piemonte RavioliMy Profile

  • Karen December 18, 2012, 4:37 PM

    Tia Clara,

    My family had an additional step, which was, once flattened (we used the plantain skin and muscle), it was dipped in salted water, then it was refried. I will try it your way with kosher salt. I also saw your comment to the person who used frozen fried plantain. You were SOOOO right. Nothing like eating it fresh (as is usually the case with ALL food unless it is meant to be frozen). Love your site! Thanks again. Also, LOVE those glasses!

    • Aunt Clara December 18, 2012, 6:15 PM

      I have heard of that method, but I like the crunchiness of coarse salt on them. A matter of preference, really.

    • Lucy February 11, 2013, 3:21 AM

      I so something similar, but instead of salted water, I dip the flattened plantain in garlic water, then refry. I’ll sometimes add salt after I have taken it out of the oil and blotted it dry. Thanks for sharing!

  • KIEANNA October 10, 2012, 2:24 PM

    This has helped me w/ my spanish project, i have to find a food to cook in Costa Rica and i have been searching the web for simple directions that will help me prepare and cook the tostones. Your directions were percise and easy to follow, thank you!!! Could u fry them w/ flour and put podwered sugar on them when they r finished and still taste good ???

  • David Dillon September 12, 2012, 9:21 AM

    Dear Aunt Clara,

    Thank you for posting so many authentic Dominican dishes on your website! My wife and I lived in Jarabacoa for two years during the early 1990s. We grew to love arroz con habichuelas and tostones. We also loved the chimichurris sold by the local street vendors. I see your recipe calls for ground beef, but the sandwiches we enjoyed from the street vendors were clearly NOT hamburger, but rather some kind of pork product. Do you have any idea what it was? Is there a decent equivalent available in the United States?

    Thanks again!
    -David Dillon

    • Aunt Clara September 12, 2012, 2:55 PM

      Thanks, David.

      If you read the comments on the chimi post you’ll see that we addressed that same questions. :)

  • gondola Peabody July 21, 2012, 12:15 PM

    I love this snack! Can be a meal!! I use the skins of the plantain to mash them down then refry to golden, then I add kosher salt. Also, I make a side dipping sauce from olive oil, lime and fresh garlic,a little salt and pepper and sit back and savor the memories of my childhood in New York city! : )

  • valentina March 4, 2012, 10:27 AM

    Delicious. I make them like this but I use the back of a glass to flatten mine ;)

  • jilberia October 7, 2011, 5:53 PM

    THANK YOU AUNT CLARA FOR THIS RECIPE! AS A WEST AFRICAN(SENEGAL) I CAN TOTALLY RELATE TO YOUR FOOD AND METHODS OF COOKING. I MADE THIS AS THE SIDE DISH OF FRIED WHOLE TILAPIA THAT WAS SEASONED WITH SALT, BLACK PEPPER AND A BIT OF FLOUR FOR THE CRUNCH. IT WAS DELISH! MY LARGE FAMILY LOVE IT LOL!

  • cyndy bradfield August 1, 2011, 9:44 AM

    Guess you had to grow up with it as a side dish. I bought some frozen and deep fried them. I don't like them green, but I'm a fan of ripe plantains sweet dish. The taste is bland, a Columbian friends wife made them once when I was younger guess I forgot the taste.

    • Aunt Clara August 2, 2011, 9:39 AM

      How many frozen dishes have you bought that turned out as good as the original? Try making yours from scratch before you make your mind.

  • kimber April 30, 2011, 1:50 PM

    I made these just this morning! I do it pretty much like this, but I use a cutting board to flatten them instead.

  • cheryl January 30, 2011, 4:54 PM

    this is how i make my fried plantains. a dominican friend taught me how! but he puts hot sauce in his sauce…. gives them a little kick!