Monday, September 14, 2009

Cooking With Plantains

Many of our students leave course, wanting to relive their glory days in Costa Rica when they experienced unique activities, connected with the environment, challenged themselves, practiced Spanish, learned new skills, self-evaluated, stayed in shape, and/or ate incredibly tasty and amazing local food.

While we can't provide solutions for every one of these nostalgic desires, we can at least help alleviate the memory-lane strain. One way of doing this is helping you cook some of the local food at home for yourself and your family/friends.

The first Tico food item you can easily learn to prepare?


There are two very common - and easy - snacks/desserts to make from plantains: maduros y patacones.

Differences: Patacones (shown in the photo above) are in the shape of a sand dollar made with unripened green plantains, and maduros are ripe plantains cut long-ways. Patacones are on the salty side, and maduros are on the sweeter side.

For a recipe to patacones, go to our newsletter article by clicking here.

For a recipe to maduros, here are the instructions:
INGREDIENTS: ripe plantains, brown sugar, cinnemon, frying oil
PREPARATION: slice plantains long-ways into thin strips, heat up a frying pan with a layer of oil in it
COOKING: fry slices of plantain in the oil, sprinkling brown sugar and cinnemon to taste; fry until browned

So go out and find some plantains to fry. If you request more recipes from your experience here, please 1) request them on our Facebook fan page wall at, 2) go to our newsletter archive (each one has a Tico recipe), or 3) send an email to for a specific request.

¡Buen provecho!*

*a Tico phrase used before meals with the same meaning as the common French phrase "Bon appetit!

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