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Honor Puerto Rico And Make A Pastelon De Maduros

Our biggest criticism of both the United States and its food is the lack of plantains. Americans love bananas, heck the United Fruit Company virtually enslaved large parts of Latin America in the 40’s and 50’s just to supply Americans with bananas. But the plantain gets no love. Why? It is delicious and versatile. You can make maduros, tostones, mariquitas, chips, and many other treats with the humble plantain. One of my favorites is pastelon de maduros from our friends in Puerto Rico. It is basically like a plantain and ground beef lasagna. Sound weird? Eat it and you’ll be convinced, dudes.

Pastelon de Maduros

1 Pound of ground beef, your choice of fattiness

1 Onion, chopped into little cubes

3 Garlic cloves, minced

1 Green bell pepper, also chopped into little cubes

1 Packet of the Puerto Rican national spice of Sazon, found in the Goya aisle

2 Tsp of Adobo, also in the Goya aisle

2 Tbs of Olive Oil

1/4 cup of tomato sauce

1/2 Cup of olives (optional)

4 Tbs of vegetable oil

4 Ripe plantains. If they look black as sin, you are ready to begin

1/2 Stick of butter

1 Cup of white cheese. Any Aryan cheese will do

3 Eggs

2 Tbs of milk

Mix the ground beef with the garlic, onion, pepper, Adobo, and Sazon. Then pour the olive oil in a skillet and brown the meat. Let it simmer for a few minutes until nice and cooked. Don’t eat raw meat or you will get the squirts something awful. Once it’s thoroughly browned, but it aside. Next, peel the ugly black plantains and slice them into long strips. It will look like plantain bacon, but with less delicious piggy flavor. Pour the vegetable oil in the pan and cook the plantains until they are nice and yellow and a little crunchy. Now, grease a casserole dish with the butter and lay down a layer of plantains, followed by a layer of meat. Then add another layer of plantains and cover that with a layer of cheese. This dish has many layers, like a yummy Puerto Rican version of “Inception”. Next, mix the egg and milk together and pour that on the dish. This will work as a bonding agent to make all these disparate foods work together. Bake it in the oven at 350 for 20 minutes. Then, eat it. Eat it like a starving child eats his last bowl of rice. It’s that good. ¡Gracias Boriquas!

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