Thursday, September 10, 2009

A Taste of International

A few years ago during a traveling vacation with some friends, we had the chance to spend a few hours in Santo Domingo. It was the perfect chance to try something new from the menu and so I did. Normally, if I have to fly shortly after a meal, I am very careful with my choices. I asked our waiter what would be good to try that would be representative or their native cuisine. I was promptly directed to Baked Chicken with Mangu. Que? Mangu? What in the world… "It’s our substitute for mashed potatoes", he replied. Dang! That was good. A few years later I traveled with my wife to Puerto Rico and we tried a dish called “Mofongo” that reminded me of the Dominican Republic’s Mangu.

If you would like to try Mangu - Mofongo, it is very easy to prepare. Here is how to do it:
You will need:.
4 green Plantain (remove the skin and cut in 3 inch pieces)
2 teaspoons of salt
1 cup of water
½ cup of whole milk
½ cup of cold water
1 cup of cheddar cheese or mozzarella
½ stick of butter (cold)
5 strips of bacon
Salt to taste.
In a large saucepan, place your cut plantain and add sufficient water to cover the plantain. Add 2 teaspoons of salt to the water. Boil the bananas for 20 or 25 minutes, until soft. Remove from the stove and drain off the water. Mash the bananas with a potato masher adding the cold water from the refrigerator, ½ cup of whole milk and the cheese. After this mixture has come to the consistency of mashed potatoes, add 1/2 stick of lightly salted butter.
Fry 6 bacon strips. Drain off the fat from the bacon. Chop the bacon and add it to your already prepared Mangu.

Puerto Rico’s Mofongo is prepared and flavored with onions, garlic and may contain grilled chicken, shrimp or lobster.


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