Mofongo (Puerto Rico)
3 light green plantains
Vegetable or peanut oil (for frying)
4 garlic cloves, peeled
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 ounces chicharrones (cracklings)
Chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
Peel plantains by slicing off the ends and cutting 3 or 4 lengthwise slits through the peel. Soak in cold water for 10 minutes, and pull of the skin in strips. Cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices, cutting at an angle so the slices have an oval shape. Saut? in vegetable oil until softened but not browned. Set aside on paper towels to drain and cool.
Mince or press garlic; add to olive oil and mix well.
Process cooled plantains in a food processor until barely smooth (this is traditionally done with a mortar and pestle).
Break chicharrones into bite-size pieces.
In a bowl, mix plantains, chicharrones, garlic and oil. Taste for seasoning and add salt if necessary (chicharrones may make dish salty enough). Form into egg-size balls with your hands. Serve warm, dusted with cilantro.
Makes about 20 balls.