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SSB Log Entry 1167
OK, I think I have finally achieved my mofongo goals.
My family members were yelling at me the whole time telling me I was going to ruin it. Once they tasted it, I was able to prove them wrong.
We ate it all so fast that I forgot to take a picture. This is the only piece that was left. RIP.
For those just tuning in, this is a reconstruction of a similar recipe I had in a restaurant in San Juan over a decade ago. This is as close as I have been able to get so far. I may tweak the recipe more next time and try to record more precise measurements.
Writing this one down for later.
- Two "true" plantains (not green bananas)
- a couple leaves of recao (not "cubano oregano")
- Chicharrón (not the snack kind, the meaty kind)
- tablespoon of corn starch
- a bowl of garlic salt brine
- a bowl of peeled whole garlic
- chicken broth
- Deep fryer
- Big wooden mortar and pestle ("Pilon")
- Peel the plantains and cut them into coins a few centimeters thick. Not too thin.
- Soak them in garlic salt brine for an hour or so
- Throw them in the deep fryer at medium heat for not too long along with the whole garlic. You're just trying to cook the outside and soften the inside. Don't over do it. Don't let them get crispy or dark.
- Chop the Chicharrón finely. Don't discard the skin, it's good.
- Mash the plantains, whole garlic and Chicharrón in the mortar and pestle. Mash it until it is very smooth.
- Mince the recao leaves as fine as you can and throw those in, too.
The Weird Part
This is where everyone got confused and concerned, but it was worth it in the end. If you've made mofongo before, you will notice that I am not using olive oil. Don't use olive oil. The mofongo will fall apart if you do.
- Put a half cup of water in a coffee mug
- Mix a heaping tablespoon of corn starch and salt into the water.
- Pour the mixture into the mortar and pestle.
- Mash the "dough" more.
- Turn the fryer back on.
- Use your hands to make baseball size lumps. Pack it hard with your hands.
- Fry it again, this time allowing the food to turn golden brown.
- Remove the balls and let them cool on a paper towel or rack or something.
- Pour a bowl of chicken broth
- Drop a single ball of mofongo into the broth and serve immediately.
- Goes well with rice.
Next time I might put some sofrito in to the mix. I didn't have any on hand. I live in the Chicago suburbs, so it is not always easy to come by.