I was wondering if anyone knew how to cook green plantains. And also...if it comes to boiling vs cooking in oil, as it usually does with potatoes, which would be the way to maximize retention of nutrients. Thanks again for the input!!
So, this isn't specifically for green plantains...but I'm pretty lazy and like to do things the most efficient way possible. If you cook green plantains and do it like all the websites all over the internet recommend then you are going to be flipping and smashing and spending a lot of time over the skillet and not getting full. That's no fun.
Here's how I do it:
I let my plantains start to turn black (but still mostly yellow), till they are pretty soft. Then I cook them one of two ways, both basically the same:
1) I cook a big pan of bacon, then leave the grease in it and cut up a couple plantains fairly thin (but not super thin), then I bake them in the bacon grease next to another couple slices of bacon, they usually are done a couple minutes after the bacon is ready.
2) Same deal, but I just smear a bunch of coconut oil on a pan and cook them in that. One caveat to doing this way is the type of coconut oil you buy. I bought this cheap brand at a grocery store a few weeks ago and it all evaporated at 350 and the plantains stuck to the pan really bad. The Nutiva brand doesn't do this and doesn't have the sticking issues.
Before paleo I didn't know what plantains were, now they are my favorite food.
Also there is a lot of variation in brands. Turbana is my favorite.
A classic South American/Carribean treatment is to cut peeled plantain into medallions, fry them in oil until just coloured, take them out, mash them flatter, then refry until crispy.
A nice African treatment is to cut peeled plantain into chunks. Then marinate the chunks in lime or lemon juice with chili and ginger. Then fry the chunks in red palm oil. NOM.
You can also sub plantain in for potato in curries, or bake it.
In West Africa we dont eat it green. We boil it and eat it with a new stew. It's yummy. OR
We fry it in oil or grill it and eat it with fish.. It's so versatile.
You can literally eat it any way you want. I find that I don't like it green as it's not as tasty but that's probably just what I am used to.
One of the best meals I ever had was in Colombia where it was ripe plantain baked with stewed vegetables and some cheese. (It was in my Vegetarian days so it was sans meat).
I've never boiled them but I use the green plantains to make jibaritos, which is basically like a steak sandwich with plantains instead of bread. Peel them, slice them in thin strips, pan fry in fat of choice (I use Kerrygold), smash them so they're flat and fry them again. Then I add mayo, tomatos, lettuce and tenderized and seasoned grilled steak. So yummy!
Does anyone have trouble with eating the plantains too green? I just noticed this entry:
NOTE: Unripe plantains, like unripe bananas, contain proteins that inhibit the actions of amylase, an enzyme required to digest starch and other complex carbohydrates. http://www.worldhealthyfoods.com/plantain (I saw this skimming the web...don't know how legit this website is).
Perhaps this is why more traditional cultures ate the plantains nearly black (really ripe)?
I must add, although the unripe plantains fried up in coconut oil really nicely, I've been in gastric distress for two days. :(
Here we go, from a true Puerto Rican. "Tostones" require the green, green plantains. Peel, cut in 1-inch thick chunks (diagonal cuts to make easier to flatten), soak in water, salt and crushed garlic for 15 mins, then fry in vegetable oil for ~7 min at 300-325F (start w oil at 350 to allow for drop in temp when adding the chunks). Take out and flatten on a sauce plate or other hard surface with a wooden spoon while warm. Dip flatten pirces in the salt water again and fry a second time at 375F for another several minutes or until golden and crisp texture noted. Pull out, blot dry excess oil in paper towel, and they are ready to go. Seasoning is up to your creative self. Most just sprinkle salt, but you can also add garlic powder or apply a little butter as well. Bon appetite...
I peel the plantain and then microwave on high for 2 minutes. I microwave green plantains and ripe plantains the same way.
I sometimes eat plantains with strawberries and shredded coconut for dessert; I also substitute a cooked plantain instead of a banana in a smoothie that also has raw egg yolks, coconut oil, shredded coconut, and frozen fruit.
A couple of recipes. One for green plantains and one for ripe.
Oh Gosh, if you have to eat the carbs, fry them in coconut oil. http://latinfood.about.com/od/beginnerrecipes/r/tostones.htm