plantains

Sancocho de mariscos (seafood stew)

Did you know that some of the recipes I post have been weeks or even months in the making? This is one of them. Sometimes I go through periods where I would cook up a storm, and create and test several recipes at the same time. They sit there until I have the time to post ...

Vegan sancocho (root stew)

Vegan Sancocho? Do you know what a sancocho is? If so, I know what you're thinking: "if it's vegan, then it isn't sancocho". After all the recipe in our blog is called a "seven meat-stew". You can hardly get any more carnivorous than that, short of chasing and killing your own prey. I love sancocho, but ...

Aguají (Rustic plantain broth)

There are days when getting out of bed does not seem like the best use of our time. Wednesday was one of such days. We inaugurated the day with a raging tropical rain and strong winds. It didn't take long until one of the shades in our terrace was ripped off its tracks. Things could only get ...

Green bananas garlic and shrimps cups

I think we should get a slogan, and if we do I have just the perfect one: Keeping spouses happy since 2001! Some of our favorite comments and emails from our readers tell us how proud they were to surprise their spouse with some delicious Dominican food. It's not only wives, but husbands, too. It really ...

Cheese-crusted ripe plantain balls recipe

Welcome to my latest obsession: ripe plantains and finger food. Of all my obsessions this is probably the least insane one. I am sure you agree. Please say you do and I'll share with you the recipe for these incredible cheese-crusted ripe plantain balls filled with melted cheese. The greatest thing about cooking is that it satisfies ...

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It is said, not completely groundlessly, that New York City is the second biggest Dominican city. When it comes to our sites, we have more readers in New York than in any other city in the world. Watching Hurricane Irene head for New York filled us with the same sense of dread as the news that ...

Mala Rabia (Guava and plantain in syrup)

When one of our forum regulars asked us about this recipe, which I had never heard of before, I was convinced it was a joke, with a name that roughly translates as "bad rage", it had to be, right? Lesson learned: never underestimate Dominican's creativity when it comes to naming our food something bizarre. And therein lies ...

Fritos maduros (Fried ripe plantains)

There can't be in the Dominican cuisine any other dish that combines so well simplicity of preparation, popularity and exotic flavor. This popular dish is popular in Cuba and Puerto Rico too, where they are known as maduros. This is served as a side dish to lunch or dinner, another way in which we Dominicans combine ...

Plátanos al caldero (Caramelized ripe plantains)

Do you remember the saying "we're all unique"? You need to know other cultures to understand and appreciate your own. This is a lesson that has taken me years to learn, and by learning about other countries' foods I have understood ours better, and what makes it unique, even if ultimately it is something that ...

How To Make Mofongo

Mofongo (garlic-flavored mashed plantains), concedes Aunt Clara, is a dish with a special place in the hearts and stomachs of Dominicans, but actually originates in the neighboring island of Puerto Rico. Not surprisingly, I know some Dominicans who would take serious issue with that claim. Mofongo is the flagship dish in many typical Dominican restaurants ...

Pastelón de plátanos amarillos (Ripe plantains casserole)

Dominicans love their pastelón de plátano maduro (ripe plantains casserole), which is ironic, because apart from politicians, in this country there is nothing that is more maligned than the plantain. It’s accused, no less, of being partly responsible for our island’s rampant underdevelopment. It is said to block the brain and stop intelligence from flowing, according to ...

Sopión (Sweet and spicy red bean stew)

Food is not just nourishment. There's also an emotional relationship between people and food. And the food we grew up with, no matter how unusual to the rest of the world, always comforts us and brings us memories of happy times long gone. That is exactly the case with this Sopión (Sweet and spicy red bean ...

Pasteles en Hoja (Roots and Beef Pockets)

Whenever I want to explain Pasteles en Hoja (Roots and Beef Pockets) to somebody who has never seen them I usually say "they are a little bit like tamales, with different ingredients and wrapped in plantain leaves instead of corn husks". I know it's a roundabout way of explaining it, but it gets the message across. If the ...

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 ...

Sancocho de 7 carnes (7-meat hearty stew)

Sancocho in the Dominican Republic is synonymous with party. Dominicans are spontaneous and happy people who do not need much of an excuse to party. Where there are two or more Dominicans, a party may break out at any moment; some occasions, however, call for more lavish and elaborate celebrations. A baptism is an occasion for family ...

Mangú (Mashed plantains)

“El platano embrutece”. I recently heard this saying for the first time, but apparently it’s common amongst Dominicans. It means that eating plantains is associated with intellectual inferiority. The popular extension of this myth is that children who eat corn flakes are more intelligent than those who eat Mangú (Mashed Plantains). Could this be true? What lies ...