My boyfriend, Daniel, is half Cuban. His other half is Jewish; we call him a "Jewbano". Sometimes he breaks out the Espanol and his slurred Cuban drawl sounds like he just got off the plane from Havana. Daniel loves Cuban food, loves his Cuban mother and love love loves plantains. And I, being the wonderful girlfriend that I am, know how to cook a good meal for my man.
Granted, this meal would not have come together without the gift of fresh green plantains from Daniel's mother. Daniel and my stomachs thank you.
This is a plate of mashed plantains and chicken in mojo sauce. It's amazing. TO DIE FOR. You will lick the plate. I know it's not that pretty (all that yellow kind of melds together) but the flavors are wild. A little lime, a little orange, onions, garlic, sweet plantains. You're drooling again. I get it.
Make this for your Cuban or non-Cuban counterpart. Drink a Cuba Libre with a straw. Pair it with a salad of heart of palm dressed in vinegar and olive oil. Pretend your bare feet are brushing up against warm sand instead of your un-swept kitchen floor.
Recipe after the jump...
Chicken in Mojo Sauce and Mashed Plantains
- 2 small chicken breasts, cut up (around 6 oz each)
- 2 yellow onions, sliced into rings
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- Juice of 2 limes
- Juice of 1 orange
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Splash of hot sauce
- 1 waxy potato, diced small
- 3 plantains (the dark spotted kind that look really bruised)
- 1/2 cup milk
In a large pot, boil a generous amount of water, heavily salted, in which to boil the plantains.
To prepare the plantains, cut off each end and then slice down the length to reveal the fruit inside. If your plantains are well bruised, the peel should come off easily. Cut into about 2 inch wide pieces.
Boil the plantains in the water for about 10 - 15 minutes. They are done when you can cut easily through the middle and the 'starchy' texture is gone from the center.
In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add onion slices and saute for 5 - 7 minutes, until lightly browned.
Remove half of sauteed onions to a food processor, set aside.
To the remaining onions in your saucepan, add the additional tablespoon of olive oil and your chicken breasts (cut into small bite-sized pieces). Add the garlic, lime and orange juice and cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 5 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.
Once plantains are cooked through, use a slotted spoon to remove them and add directly to food processor. Don't pour the water out, you'll want that for the potato. Place the diced potato directly in the plantain water and boil for about 3 - 4 minutes, until cooked through. Drain potatoes and add to saucepan, spoon the mojo sauce over them, season with salt and pepper, cover and set aside until serving.
Season your plantains with salt and pepper and then pulse your food processor until the plantains start to fall apart, about 1 minute. Make sure to leave an opening in the top so the steam can escape. Turn food processor on normal speed and drizzle in milk slowly until mixture resembles soft mashed potatoes. Remove to serving dish.
To serve, top your plantain mash with the chicken mojo and spoon the lovely sauce all over the top.