Discover the Delicious World of Patacones

  1. Panama City Panama food and dining
  2. Local dishes
  3. Patacones

Welcome to Panama City, the bustling capital of Panama known for its vibrant culture and mouthwatering cuisine. If you're a food lover, then you're in for a treat as we take you on a journey to discover the delicious world of Patacones. These crispy, fried plantain slices are a staple in Panamanian cuisine and are loved by locals and tourists alike. In this article, we'll delve into the history of Patacones, how they are made, and where to find the best ones in Panama City.

So get ready to tantalize your taste buds and learn all about this beloved local dish in our Silo on Panama City's food and dining scene. Patacones, also known as Tostones, are a staple in Panamanian cuisine and can be found in almost every restaurant and street food stall in Panama City. These delicious treats are made from green plantains that are fried, flattened, and then fried again until they are crispy and golden brown. They can be served as a side dish, an appetizer, or even as a main course with various toppings. Patacones have a long history in Panama, dating back to the pre-Colombian era when plantains were a major part of the indigenous diet. As Spanish colonizers arrived in the region, they brought with them African slaves who introduced new cooking techniques and ingredients.

This fusion of cultures resulted in the creation of Patacones, which are now considered a traditional dish in Panama. The process of making Patacones is relatively simple. It starts with selecting green plantains, which are firmer and less sweet than ripe plantains. The plantains are then peeled and sliced into thick rounds, which are then fried in hot oil until they are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. The fried rounds are then removed from the oil and flattened using a tostonera, a wooden or plastic press specifically designed for this purpose.

Once flattened, the plantains are returned to the oil for a second fry until they are golden brown and crispy. One of the best things about Patacones is their versatility. They can be served as a side dish alongside other traditional Panamanian dishes such as ceviche or sancocho, or they can be enjoyed on their own as an appetizer. They can also be topped with various ingredients such as shredded chicken, beef, or pork, along with sauces like salsa or guacamole. For those looking for a heartier meal, Patacones can also be served as a main course with larger toppings and more substantial fillings. If you want to try Patacones in Panama City, you won't have to look far.

Most restaurants and food stalls will have them on their menu, and they are often served as a complimentary snack before a meal. Some popular spots to try Patacones include the Mercado de Mariscos (Seafood Market), where you can enjoy fresh seafood with a side of Patacones, or El Trapiche, a traditional restaurant known for its authentic Panamanian cuisine. For those who want to try making Patacones at home, it's a simple and fun process. You can find tostoneras online or at specialty kitchen stores, or you can use a flat object like a plate or cutting board to flatten the plantains. Just make sure to remove any excess oil by placing the flattened plantains on a paper towel before serving. In conclusion, Patacones are a must-try dish for anyone visiting or living in Panama City.

Not only are they delicious and versatile, but they also have a rich history and cultural significance in Panama. So next time you're in the city, don't forget to add Patacones to your must-try list!

The History of Patacones

Patacones, also known as tostones, have been a staple in Panamanian cuisine for centuries. This delicious dish is made from flattened and fried plantains, and is enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. The origins of Patacones can be traced back to the pre-Columbian era, when the indigenous people of Panama used plantains as a source of food. The plantains were mashed and formed into patties, which were then cooked on hot stones. When the Spanish arrived in Panama in the 16th century, they brought with them their love for fried foods.

The indigenous people adapted their traditional plantain dish to the Spanish style of frying, and Patacones as we know them today were born. Since then, Patacones have become an integral part of Panamanian cuisine and culture. They are served as a side dish or snack, and are often accompanied by a variety of dips and sauces. Today, Patacones can be found in almost every restaurant and home in Panama City. They are a symbol of the country's rich history and diverse culinary influences.

The Cultural Significance

The delicious and beloved Patacones are not just a popular dish in Panama City, but they also hold a significant role in Panamanian culture. These crispy and savory plantain fritters have been a staple food in Panama for centuries, with a rich history that dates back to the indigenous tribes who first inhabited the land. For many Panamanians, Patacones are more than just a tasty snack or side dish - they represent their cultural identity and traditions.

The dish has been passed down from generation to generation, with each family adding their own unique touch to the recipe. It is often served during special occasions and celebrations, making it an integral part of Panamanian festivities. Patacones also hold a special place in the hearts of locals as they are deeply connected to their country's history. The dish is believed to have originated from the Afro-Caribbean community in Panama, who brought their cooking techniques and flavors to the country. Today, Patacones can be found in every corner of Panama City, from street vendors to high-end restaurants, showcasing its widespread popularity and cultural significance. Moreover, Patacones are not just a dish but a representation of Panama's diverse culinary heritage.

The fritters are often served with different toppings and accompaniments, such as meat, seafood, or traditional sauces, highlighting the country's fusion of cultures and flavors. This makes Patacones not only a delicious meal but also a symbol of cultural diversity and unity in Panama.

How to Make Patacones at Home

If you want to truly experience the deliciousness of Patacones, the best way is to make them at home. Not only will you have full control over the ingredients and cooking process, but you'll also impress your friends and family with your newfound culinary skills. To start, you'll need green plantains, oil, salt, and any additional toppings or seasonings of your choice. First, peel the plantains and cut them into 1-inch thick slices.

Heat up the oil in a frying pan and fry the plantains until they are golden brown. Remove them from the pan and let them cool for a few minutes. Next comes the fun part - smashing the plantains! Place each slice between two sheets of wax paper and use a flat object like a plate or cup to flatten them into thin discs. Then, fry them again until they are crispy and golden on both sides. Sprinkle with salt while they are still hot and add any desired toppings, such as cheese, beans, or salsa. With these simple steps, you can master the art of making perfect Patacones right in your own kitchen.

Experiment with different toppings and seasonings to create your own unique version of this beloved dish. And don't forget to serve them with a side of love and appreciation for the rich culture and history behind Patacones.

Where to Find the Best Patacones

Patacones, also known as tostones, are a staple dish in Panama City and can be found at many local restaurants and street vendors. However, if you want to experience the most authentic and delicious Patacones, there are a few spots that stand out above the rest. One of the top places to try Patacones is at Mercado de Mariscos, a seafood market located in the heart of the city.

Here, you can find freshly made Patacones topped with a variety of seafood such as shrimp or octopus. The bustling atmosphere and local charm make this a must-visit spot for any foodie. Another great option is El Trapiche, a popular restaurant known for its traditional Panamanian cuisine. Their Patacones are made with ripe plantains and served with a side of refried beans and cheese.

It's the perfect spot to get a taste of the local flavors and culture. If you're looking for a more casual dining experience, head to La Rana Dorada, a brewery and restaurant that offers a unique take on Patacones. Here, the Patacones are served as an appetizer with different toppings such as pulled pork or chorizo. It's a great spot to relax and enjoy some delicious Patacones with a cold beer.

If you prefer to make your own Patacones at home, make sure to stop by El Rey supermarket for all the necessary ingredients. They have everything from fresh plantains to the traditional wooden press used to flatten and fry the plantains. No matter where you choose to indulge in Patacones, you're sure to find a delicious and authentic version of this beloved dish. So, don't miss out on trying one of Panama City's most iconic and delicious foods!Patacones are more than just a delicious dish, they are a representation of Panama City's rich and diverse culture.

From their humble beginnings as a simple snack for plantation workers, to becoming a must-try for tourists and locals alike, Patacones have truly stood the test of time. So next time you're in Panama City, be sure to indulge in this authentic and mouth-watering dish.

Abigail Angelotti
Abigail Angelotti

General tv evangelist. Freelance social media specialist. Hipster-friendly twitter specialist. Beer fanatic. Typical student.