Lookout potato chips, here comes the crispy, crunchy plantain chips called mariquitas with a fresh garlicky green dip.
You might have noticed that at the last double stayte with friends, I only posted a drink recipe. Well never fear, The Perfect Mojitos were not enjoyed alone. Although the empanadas are not share worthy yet, that’s okay because these mariquitas were the uncontested winner of the night.
Years ago there was a fantastic restaurant here called Tres Meridas, as the three owners were from three different countries that all had a city named Merida. They had a great blend of Mexican, Spanish and Venezualean cuisine in a beautiful restaurant with custom handmade plates and flatware. Of course, because I loved it, it closed. I still remember some of the dishes and one of my favorite things was the chips they would put on the table while you perused the menu. Long, light and crispy it was impossible to eat just one especially since they came accompanied by two delicious dips. This was my introduction to fried plantain chips.
If you think of the flattened rounds when you hear fried plantains, those are tostones which are thick slices of plantain that are fried, flattened and then fried again. These thin slices of plantain are called mariquitas and though usually fried, turn out just as crispy when baked so why bother with all the oil and mess? I admit that I am biased, unless a client specifically requests something fried, I don’t deep fry. The mess, the smell and the disposal are just not worth it to me. Not to mention that you have to fry in batches. With these babies you can cover a whole baking sheet with them and have a generous amount done in one shot.
Mariquitas with Garlicky Green Dip
- 3 green plantains
- 2 tablespoons oil
- Fine salt
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 ½ teaspoon minced garlic about 1 clove
- 1 handful cilantro
- 2 tablespoons capers
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Slice the top and bottom off the plantains. Cut a line from top to bottom getting through the peel but not into the plantain. Pull off the peel, using the edge of the knife if necessary.
- Slice the plantains vertically, as thin as possible about 1/16th of an inch. Use a mandoline preferably or a slicer or vegetable peeler.
- Gently toss the slices with the oil taking care not to break them. They can be brittle when green.
- Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment and layout the slices in a single layer. Sprinkle with salt.
- Bake for 15 minutes, rotating at 10 minutes. Mariquitas are done when golden brown. The thicker the slices the longer it will take.
- While mariquitas bake, blend all dip ingredients in a food processor or with an immersion blender.