Puerto Rican cooking is similar to both Spanish, Cuban and Mexican food. It has a unique blend of Spanish, African, Taino and American influences. The aroma that wafts from kitchens throughout Puerto Rico comes from adobo and sofrito blends of herbs and spices that give many of the native foods their distinctive taste and color.

Adobo, which we usually buy at the grocery store, can actualy be made by crushing together peppercorns, oregano, garlic, salt, olive oil, and lime juice or vinegar. Sofrito, in my household is never bought from the store, always homemade. In a food processor we combine onions, garlic, red and green peppers, cilantro and small sweet peppers and when mixing these pour a little bit of water or olive oil. We put this in just about everything we cook from rices, soups, stews, and even marinate meats in this mixure.

Tostones or maduros are served mostly with meat, fish or poultry dishes served on the island. In fact, the plantains seems to be the single most popular side dish served on the island. Plantains are a variety of banana that cannot be eaten raw. They are much coarser in texture that ordinary bananas and are harvested while green then baked, fried or boiled. When tostones are fried to a deep golden-yellow they are usually served as a appetizer with before-dinner drinks.

Plantains seems to be the single most popular side dish served on the island. Plantains are a variety of banana that cannot be eaten raw. They are much coarser in texture that ordinary bananas and are harvested while green, then baked, fried, or boiled. When made into tostones, they are usually served as a appetizer or a side dish. Fried to a deep golden-yellow.

All of this information and more can be found here.