How To Make Mofongo w/ Shrimp
Step 1: Prep the plantains
Cut the ends of the plantains, peel them and cut into 1-inch thick pieces and let them soak in salted water for 15 minutes. Drain the plantains and dry them very well.
Step 2: Brown the plantains
Step 3: Prepare the vegetables
Add bacon to frying pan and cook 5 minutes then add the onions and peppers, stirring occasionally. Cook until bacon is crisp and onion is soft and caramelized a bit.
Step 4: Make the mofongo mix
Using a mortar & pestle of large bowl + potato masher – mash plantains then add minced garlic, spices, and cilantro. Next add in the bacon, onions, peppers, and pan grease. Knead until well mixed but not overmixed.
Step 5: Plate the mofongo
Spray inside of a small bowl or ramekin with cooking spray or grease with oil. Pack a portion of the plantain dough into the bowl to shape it, then invert the bowl to slide the mofongo out onto a plate. Press the top of the mofongo with your thumb to create a small crevasse.
Step 6: Cook the shrimp
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil then fry the shrimp 2 minutes per side
Step 7: Finish the dish
Place the shrimp around and on top of the mofongo.
Served topped with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce and more cilantro.
Expert Tips For Making Mofongo Relleno
- Traditional recipes call for a mortar and pestle but don’t fret if you don’t have one as a potato masher and a large bowl will work just fine
- To minimize calories feel free to boil the plantains vs. frying them
- If you don’t have access to fresh pork rinds/crackling use crispy fried bacon or just skip the pork altogether
- Slice the plantains thick enough to prevent drying when cooking
- Use one ripe plantain in the recipe to add some sweetness and nice contrast to the green plantain
- Don’t cook the plantains too long or it will be too hard and dry for mashing
- I chose shrimp, but feel free to choose your protein of choice
- The sauce can be made days in advance and refrigerated until ready for use.
- 2 plantains (1 green and 1 ripe) you'll need 2 total for each mofongo to prepare
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 3 strips bacon (optional) cut into small pieces
- 1 medium red bell pepper diced finely
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- Fresh cilantro chopped finely
- 1/4 tablespoon smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Olive oil
- 1 cup Roasted Red Pepper Sauce
- 1 pound Shrimp (peeled and deveined) fresh or frozen
- Cut the ends of the plantains, peel them and cut into 1-inch thick pieces and let them soak in salted water for 15 minutes. Drain the plantains and dry them very well.
- Heat oil in a pan and carefully add plantain slices to the hot oil and cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until the discs have turned a darker golden color but have not yet browned (do not let them brown!).You should be able to easily pierce them with a fork when they are ready. NOTE: Make sure there is sufficient fat in the pan, add additional if the plantains soak up too much.
- When removing the plantains from the oil, place them on a napkin to drain the oil well before mashing them.
- Add bacon to frying pan and cook 5 minutes, then add onions and red peppers, stirring occasionally. Continue cooking until bacon is crisp and onion is soft and caramelized. (If not using bacon just use oil with the vegetables and saute them)
- Use the mortar and pestle or large bowl with potato masher. Mash plantains then add minced garlic, spices, and cilantro. Then add the bacon, onions red pepper and all of the grease from the pan. Knead until everything is well mixed.
- Form a large ball of the mofongo with your hands or shape in a ramekin or small bowl and serve it on a large plate. Apply a small amount of olive oil to the inside of the bowl to help the finished product release from the sides. Press a portion of the dough to form a bowl-shape. Place your vessel over a plate and quickly flip it over to release it. Tap on the top and sides to help it out. You may need to use a butter knife to help release the edges so it falls easily onto the plate.
- Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil to pan; swirl to coat. Sprinkle freshly ground black pepper and salt over shrimp. Add shrimp to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until shrimp are done.
- Place shrimp around and on top of the mofongo.
- Top with roasted red pepper sauce. Garnish with cilantro.
- Best to serve the mofongo FRESH as it does not reheat well.
- I like to press a hole in the center of the mofongo and then stuff it with chunks of the shrimp mixed with the sauce.
- Depending on size of mortar and serving size you may need to mash the plantains in stages.
- If you feel that the mofongo is too dry you can add a little olive oil.You should be able to roll the dough into balls without it falling apart – if it crumbles it’s too dry and needs more fat.
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