It Before It Grows

Tostones de panapen!

In the big struggle to get over myself, which is quite a climb, I could use a set of cleats. The fruit thingy has a hard, waxy rind. Even my sharpest knife had trouble slicing through it. The center is dense, and I don’t know if it’s edible, so I cut that out and made a mental note to look that up. Further: the panapen previously putting in a cameo appearance developed a delicate but inescapable aroma very quickly and went mushy within days; the pictured panapen is a worthy understudy, but it too was making plans to become One with the compost pile. Fortunately, once the skin came off, the seeds came out and I’d cut it into similar size chunks, the panapen merged with hot oil and magically transformed into tostones instead.

To make tostones, you take chunks of platanos or panapen, fry them lightly in hot oil, mash them flat and fry them to golden brown. Drain, sprinkle with sea salt. Nom, nom, nom. Tostones de panapen have a crisp outer shell, a soft, sweet center and a nice crunch. Eat while still warm for maximum happiness. You want that, right?

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