This summer, I'm living in Danville, KY. Unfortunately, Danville is almost a thousand miles away from my home in Boston, MA. This means I've been away from my family and amazing Dominican food. It's been incredibly difficult since I cannot seem to recreate many of the dishes cooked for me at home. However, being away has definitely increased my appreciation of Dominican culture and food. I figure others should also partake in the consumption of Dominican food. It'd really be greedy to keep it a secret!
1. Platanos and everything else
This dish is a staple for Dominicans everywhere. It's traditionally served at breakfast time, but realistically you can eat it whenever. I love to have it for dinner. It consists of green plantains that can be boiled, fried, or mashed (mangu). Also, it can be served with multiple sides. I usually stick to fried salami (Induveca brand), fried cheese (Tropical brand), fried eggs, and or fried red onions. You can pick and choose which toppings to add depending on your preference. Interested in trying?
Recipe link: http://www.dominicancooking.com/532-mangu-mashed-p... Note: The toppings just need to be fried. (Corn oil is best but any oil will suffice.)
2. Sancocho or Stew
[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F06%2F07%2F6360086339008236431021017263_sancocho%2Ben%2Bolla%25252C%2Bdominican%2Bstew.JPG&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=220&h=c538ab2eea2b02c85056368da662acef696fda72b180b4d744709e8c7e560116&size=980x&c=2769068383 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F06%252F07%252F6360086339008236431021017263_sancocho%252Ben%252Bolla%2525252C%252Bdominican%252Bstew.JPG%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D220%26h%3Dc538ab2eea2b02c85056368da662acef696fda72b180b4d744709e8c7e560116%26size%3D980x%26c%3D2769068383%22%7D" expand=1 original_size="1x1"]Now, this is just about the most delicious form of soup ever to exist. It's cooked with green plantains, corn, carrots, beef, potatoes etc. It really can be made in so many different ways. On a rainy or cold day this is perfection. Also, it's best served with rice (yes, inside the stew) and a slice of avocado.
Recipe: https://www.facebook.com/TeamLejuanJames (The best one I found was coincidentally on Facebook. The link will take you to Lejuan James' page which includes 2 tutorials (part 1 & part 2) on how to make sancocho. Enjoy!
Warning: These are highly addicting.
This dish consists of meat wrapped in frying dough. It's generally an appetizer or snack in Dominican households. You can't go wrong. Also, they're super easy to make.
Recipe: http://www.goya.com/english/recipes/empanadas-beef... Feel free to switch up the seasoning or the meat used!
4. Arroz, Habichuela, y Carne
This is completely a signature Dominican dish. It's served every single day at most Dominican households. Somehow, you don't seem to get tired of it. Generally, it's just white or yellow rice, beans (black or brown), and some kind of meat. The meat can be cooked in a multitude of ways too. This is the classic. It may be overwhelming for beginners since it contains many aspects, but it does allow for a complete meal.
Recipe: http://recetasdecocinatipicas.blogspot.com/2013/08... Also, I acknowledge that the recipe is written in Spanish, but most browsers allow for it to be automatically translated into English. Best of luck!
5. Habichuela con Dulce or Dominican Sweet Beans
This is just one of many delicious Dominican desserts. It consists of ground up kidney beans, coconut milk, Dominican cookies, and raisins. It sounds odd, but it's really worth trying. I have yet to meet an individual that has anything negative to say about it. Also, it's usually brought out around the holidays so it's really a special dish.
There are literally hundreds of Dominican recipes worth trying. I've listed just the signature dishes with hopes of presenting beginners with an introduction into Latin cuisine. You can literally google, "Dominican recipes," and have tons more to choose from. Also, Dominicancooking.com is a life saver. It's the reason I haven't died from starvation or utter homesickness. I hope you all take the time to try these recipes out. It'll be worth both the time and effort!