Saturday, August 21, 2010

Day 49-Dominican Republic (Santa Domingo)(NA) Queso Fritto with Mangu de Platanos. Up Next, East Timor (AS)Platano

I don't spend ALL of my time in the kitchen

Warning!!!! Blogging, if committed to, will interfere with ones personal/professional life. I know this to be true. Amidst the 24/7 noise of parenting teenagers, sending my first born off to college next week, my paying job (oh that), laundry, bills (oh, those) caring for my animals, yada, yada...I find myself having to re-shuffle my priorities as one would an iPod playlist ... but not so randomly or pleasingly. It seems, quite often, the amount of time required to maintain this blog and deal with technical glitches has begun to take obsessive precedence over all but the most important tasks (my family)....guilty.

Well then, now that I've confessed my increasing negligence of most things domestic and mundane,  and my unrelenting drive to turn out a quality, albeit amateur, product, what's for breakfast in the Dominican Republic?
Queso fritto, that's what I'm talkin' about! commonly served for breakfast in the Dominican Republic along with Mangu de Plantanos or guava paste, this wonderful cheese should be eaten hot, straight from the pan. Don't even think about the calories, fat content or cholesterol. Eat it with pleasure and total disregard for your waistline as it's likely far less lethal than anything you could possibly eat at McDonald's, TGI Friday's or Chili's.

Dominican Republic (Santa Domingo)(NA): Located in the  West Indies, DR occupies the eastern two-thirds of the island of Hispaniola, which it shares with Haiti. Its area equals that of Vermont and New Hampshire combined. Duarte Peak, at 10,417 ft (3,175 m), is the highest point in the West Indies.

The Dominican Republic was explored by Columbus on his first voyage in 1412. He named it La Espagnola and his son, Diego, was its first viceroy. The Capital, Santa Domingo, which was founded in 1496, is the oldest European settlement in the Western Hemisphere.

Dominican cuisine is predominantly made up of a combination of Taino, Spanish and African influences. Breakfast usually consists of eggs and mangu (boiled cassava or another root vegetable) or fried meat or cheese. Lunch is generally the largest and most important meal of the day and always includes rice and beans. Sofrito, a mix of local herbs and spices sautéed to bring out the dish's flavor is often included as well.

Blitzen Trapper: Who knows if they like Dominican food, but I know I love their music, and have listened to their new record, Destroyer of the Void, all week, so I'm putting them in them in blog again because I can. They don't have a video for Destroyer of the Void yet (that I know of), but Fur is a fantastically imagined video and the song is beautiful go Blitzen Trapper - I hope you guys get all the accolades you deserve. 

Buddyboy -I think his likeness was used in the Fur Video


Use green, not yellow plantains - I've had great luck with Chiquita

Slice up plantains in chunks

Cut up cheese in chunks or wedges (your choice)

Sauté onions as garnish for mangu de platanos 

Fry up the cheese -- don't think about the consequences

Cooking on all 4 burners 

Must have jumbo mug of coffee

Thing 'o beauty

When plantains are soft, add butter, salt and a little water, then mash up in bowl

a beautiful Dominican breakfast!

Quesso Fritto

1 package Quesso de Freir Cheese


Oil for frying

Cut the cheese into fat slices (about 12 slices per 18 oz package).  Individually place each slice in bowl of flour.  They don’t need to be completely covered- just a dusting.  Heat 1/4 cup of canola oil in frying pan on high heat.  Place cheese slices in pan (oil should bubble just a bit).  Cook until browned on both sides.

Mangu de Platanos


  • 4 unripe plantains
  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 2 large onions
  • 1 tablespoon of vinegar
  • 1 cup of cold water
  • Salt


  1. Boil the plantains adding 2 teaspoons of salt to the water. When the plantains are very tender turn off the heat.
  2. While the plantains are boiling, heat a tablespoon of oil in a shallow pan. Sautee the onions, add the salt and the vinegar. Reserve.
  3. Take the plantains out of the water and mash them with a fork. Add the butter and the cold water and keep mashing until it is very smooth. Garnish with the onions and serve with scrambled eggs or deep-fried slices of cheese, mortadella or beef salami.
Recipe from

Final Assessment: We loved this breakfast - Like most Dominican food, it's flavors are mild - not spicy. The plantains and onions were great, and the fried cheese...well, who doesn't dig fried cheese? 

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