I bought some green plantains a few weeks ago planning to make patacones (fried, smashed and fried again green bananas or plantains). I never got around to making those, and the plantains obviously ripened. Now that I've indulged a bit over the holidays, I'm not so inclined to make the usual use for ripe plantains: platanos a la tentacion (a panamanian bananas foster, basically). Any ideas for a low-oil savory plantain that has some nutritive value? Could I use the ripes in a soul food stew I'm making?



campagnes January 2, 2011
You could make pastelon - if you're not familiar, it's similar to lasagna, but using plantains.

Slice your plantains lengthwise and fry in vegetable oil about 2-3 minutes on each side until slightly crispy; set aside on paper towels.

Brown ground beef with some onion, garlic, green pepper, oregano, and cilantro. Add about 1/2 cup tomato sauce, a few chopped green olives, a small handful of raisins, and a glug of white vinegar. (An envelope of Goya Sazon is also fantastic in this, if you have it on hand)

Layer plantains with beef mixture and a handful of monterey jack cheese in a greased 8x8 pan; repeat until you end with a layer of plantain, then pour 3 beaten eggs over the whole thing. Top with cheese, cover with foil, then bake at 350 for 15-30 minutes, or until eggs are set.
Amanda H. January 1, 2011
Adding them to stew is a great idea -- they'll soak up the cooking liquid and give it some heft and good flavor.
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