These fried delights are a marriage of Africa, Europe, and the Americas, combining ingredients, techniques, and tastes from all three places. This recipe requires preparation of the picadillo recipe (also included in this chapter).
- Yield: 25 each (4 ounces/serving)
For the Dough
- 3 lbs Plantains, green
- 1 gal Hot Water
- 1 gal Salted Water
- 2 lbs Taro Root (also called yautia)
- 3 oz Olive Oil
- 1 Tbsp Achiote Paste (also called annatto)
- 1 Tbsp Salt
For Forming and Frying the Alcapurrias
- ½ Picadillo Recipe, cooled
- Grated or Puréed Plantain and Taro Mixture, rested and refrigerated overnight
- 1 oz Olive Oil
- Aluminum Foil
How to Make It
For Making the Dough
- Cut off the ends of the green plantains, and then cut them in half, making two shorter-length pieces. Next, make four or five vertical cuts along the length of the plantain pieces, just through the skin and equally spaced, and set the plantains in the hot water; allow them to sit for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, remove the plantains and peel them by pulling the skin in the opposite direction from the length of the plantain (do not try to peel them like a banana, or pieces will probably break off).
- Once the plantains have been peeled, put them in a container with the salted water.
- Peel the taro root, and place the taro pieces into the salted water as well.
- Finely grate or purée the plantains and taro.
- In a small saucepan, combine the olive oil and achiote paste; heat over a gentle flame to dissolve and bloom the achiote paste.
- Combine the achiote oil, salt, grated plantain, and taro in a mixing bowl, and mix well to completely distribute the ingredients.
- Refrigerate the mixture overnight before using it to make the alcapurrias. For Forming and Frying the Alcapurrias
- Preheat the deep fryer to 360 degree F.
- Tear off a foot-long piece of aluminum foil, and coat an area (6 in x 6 in) of the torn-off piece with some of the olive oil.
- Place approximately 3 oz of the batter onto the oiled area, and then spread it out using oiled (and sanitized) fingers or an oiled spatula.
- Place approximately 1 heaping Tbsp of the picadillo mixture on top of the dough; using the foil, wrap the dough around the filling and seal the ends of the dough to completely envelop the meat mixture.
- Slide the dough filled with the picadillo into the preheated deep fryer, and fry until the exterior turns golden brown.
- Remove the fried alcapurrias and allow the excess grease to drip onto a paper towel before serving.
- Continue steps 3–6 to fry the remaining dough and meat filling to serve.