Ripe Plantains Canoes

No, I am not talking about a canoe we use to go on a trip on the river, these are a delicious canoes made with ripe plantains (platanos maduros), an appetizer that is prepared in many countries of Central America and the Caribbean. A couple of days had told my husband that I wanted to eat "canoas de plátanos maduros" and yesterday he surprised me with the ingredients and said he would prepare this dish for me. It is very rare that my husband cook, so apart from being delighted not to have to cook and to rest, I thought I had to save this recipe as a nice memory in my blog.

There are many recipes and stories shared and archived in personal blogs. When I search among my recipes and I remember many special days full of fond memories of family, friends, and my cooking. That's why I love having this blog, it's my space for favorite recipes with family memories.

Now back with the recipe ... this dish reminds me of my Puerto Ricans friends who cook these, and also of a cuchifrito restaurant in New York, where I always bought this canoes filled with ground pork meat. I have not seen this sold anywhere in this country, that why we prepare it at home. If you always buy these canoes, next time you crave some prepare them yourself, they'll taste better and will be less greasy. I hope you like my version of this recipe, cooked by my husband.

Ripe Plantains Canoes 

10 ripe plantains (peels should be yellow with black spots)
Grated cheese to taste
Oil for frying
1 pound (½ kilo) of cooked ground beef or pork  -for recipe: Ground Beef (Picadillo) .

1. Prepare ground beef: In a hot skillet with 2 Tablespoons of oil, cook the ground beef until it is no longer pink, add the seasoning of your choice and tomato sauce. Let cook until desired sauce consistency. The picadillo recipe is very easy to prepare, and I have a great recipe in this blog that you can save the recipe to have on hand when you need the find: Ground Beef (Picadillo).

2. Prepare the plantains: Peel the bananas, and put them to fry in a pan with plenty of oil until golden. This step takes about six to eight minutes, fry over medium heat to allow plantains to cook well. When done place them on paper towels or a metal mesh to drain, leave to cool slightly for easier handling in next step.

3. Canoes form: Once plantains have cooled slightly, make a vertical cut along the center and form so that each plantain looks like canoe. Be careful not to get cut through the other side. Place them on a greased tray and bake for 10 minutes at 350˚F (175˚F), remove from oven, stuffed with meat and cheese, return to oven and bake until the cheese melts. Serves as an appetizer or as a side dish with white rice, or a salad for a complete meal.

Yield: 5 to 10 servings. 

To shape plantains and open the center, gently push both ends toward the center, before baking, this will make it easier to fill. I bake them first without the filling to keep meat juicy and not dry.

Receta en español: Canoas de Plátanos Maduros.

Commit your work to the Lord, and then your plans will succeed. - Proverbs 16:3


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