Have I mentioned how much I love Cuban food? Yes? Okay, have I mentioned how much I love this one Cuban restaurant in Chicago, called Paladar? Fabio and I frequented Paladar a lot. If you are ever in Chicago and find yourself in Logan Square, go there and order a coconut mojito, the ropa vieja, and some Cuban sopes.
What’s a Cuban Sope?, you ask?
I had never given it much thought until I decided I wanted it on my blog. As it turns out, sope is actually a Mexican dish. It’s a circle of fried masa, topped with refried beans, cheese, tomato, lettuce, etc. There are tons of variations on the sope across the different regions of Mexico.
Our beloved Paladar added a Cuban twist to the traditional Mexican sope. Their Cuban sope has the same general structure, but in place of masa is fried plantain (or a tostone), and in place of beans and cheese, it’s topped with a traditional Cuban flavor – ropa vieja, shrimp, or shredded chicken. My Cuban sope is topped with picadillo. You can find the full recipe for my favorite turkey picadillo here!
- 1 green plantain
- 3-5 Tbsp coconut oil
- Peel plantain and cut into 1" slices.
- Heat about 2 Tbsp coconut oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the plantain and fry for about 1 minute on each side. Remove from pan and place on a plate or other flat surface. Using the bottom of a glass or a plate, smoosh the pieces of plantain until they are flat little pancakes. Season well with salt.
- Return to pan (add more oil if needed) and fry for an additional 30 seconds or so on each side, so that the middles that you smooshed out can get fried a little.
- Remove plantains from pan and place on a paper towel. Use another paper towel and press on the plantains to absorb some of the excess oil.
- Top each piece with a spoonful of picadillo. Ya esta!