With the very real (and disgusting) exceptions of canned candied yams and cranberry sauce, stuffing is by far the worst of Thanksgiving sides. If not shoved into the bowels of a deceased, dry-as-hell bird, the starchy slosh just sits on a plate, attempting to mask itself as one of the more savory, potato-based dishes at your feast. After a few too many glasses of red, you might even mistake the mixture (breadcrumbs, onions, celery, salt, and pepper) for a fancy mac ‘n’ cheese. And you’re going to be so disappointed when you take that first bite: you just indulged in a food built of so many other food scraps, it’s named for taking up space.
Instead of that shit, try mofongo stuffing.
If you’re familiar with the Puerto Rican staple—which, if you’re not, prepare to have your mind blown—mofongo stuffing takes about 20-30 minutes to make and is so goddamn delicious. In its purest, most bare-bones form, it takes four steps: buy a bunch of plantains, peel them, slice them up and soak them in salt water for 10-15 minutes. Drain ‘em, fry ‘em until they’re a light brown (you don’t want ‘em crispy), mash ‘em with a mortar and pestle and add whatever else you want, like pork or onions or peppers, to the composite. Shape it into a mound if you’d like to be traditional, and presto: mofongo.
The recipe for mofongo stuffing is pretty similar. The blog YoSoyBoriquen suggests mixing bacon, peppers, garlic, olive oil and a chicken broth with your mofongo to make stuffing. It’s like regular ass boring stuffing, but with much more flavor and plantains instead of old breadcrumbs. And it’s better for you! And so much more delicious! And so easy to make!
But hey, if you’re the type to drown your sorrows and your flavorless slop in gravy, I respect you, either way. But there comes a time in every adult’s life when we must consider tossing the old bread stuffing for something that better resembles food and not wood chips. Mofongo is the answer.