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Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:10 amForum Host
Plantains and green figs are a mainstay of the West Indian diet. They are cousins to the banana but they do not ripen in the same way, do not taste the same, and certainly cannot be eaten in its raw state.
Plantains are very versatile fruits as they can be cooked through all stages of ripeness. These bananas are a good source of potassium, folate, vitamins C and B6, and a very good source of vitamin A.
Here’s a little plantain trivia: Plantains themselves are not indigenous to the West Indies but were brought to the islands by missionaries and cultivated. Slave rations of food at that time were not great but did include some plantain.
Each slave received one or two bunches as a week’s worth of provisions. They used plantains to make many things, even wine. They ate plantains mostly boiled and fried. The leaves were used to make paper and also as a receptacle for steaming foods. A tradition that still continues today.
Belizean baked plantains. The sweet syrup that leaks from the splitting skin of a hot sweet potato—is fantastic but along the belt of the Equator, an abundant local alternative produces a similarly delicious result: a baked plantain.
This banana-like fruit, though often eaten as a savory starch source, can be left to ripen until black in the skin and soft in the flesh, which will by now be sweet and sticky. Cooking plantains as a sweet potato alternative is a cinch: Put them in a metal baking dish and bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 or 20 minutes. When that syrup starts bubbling, the plantains are done. To serve, peel open the fruit, and the steaming flesh will fall onto the plate. Now, season as you would a yam—or melt coconut oil onto the fruit for a stronger exotic accent. Plantains grow throughout the tropics.
Here are some recipes featuring plantains that I found on Food.com
Oven Baked Sweet Plantains
Platanos Fritos (Sauteed Plantains)
Plantain Chicken Rolls
Roast Chicken With Plantains and Onions
Sweet Potato Bake With Shredded Plantain and Coconut Topping
I know I haven’t posted much lately, but I have the feeling there are only Dib and I who ever come our way. If you happen by, hope you pick up some plantains at you supermarket and give one of these recipes a try. Let me know of you ever cook plantains.
Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:13 amFood.com Groupie
I need to get to the cities-we don't have plantains here in our small grocery store-I want them to go with caribbean tacos!
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