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How to Cook Ripe Plantains or Platanos Maduros

Updated on May 14, 2013
5 stars from 2 ratings of How to Cook Platanos Maduros or Sweet Plantains

Plantains or "platanos"

Plantains are a popular dish in the Dominican Republic; that's where my family is from. It is also popular in many tropical climates, such as, parts of Asia and the Caribbean. Plantains are naturally gluten-free. They are also starchier than, but not as sweet as the rest of the banana family. Unlike the banana, they are prepared like vegetables.

Their use in the cooking world is comparable to the use of a potato or when ripe, to that of a sweet potato. If the plantain is still green you can make "tostones"(fried plantains), "mofongo"(mashed plantains), or chop it and put it in a soup or bean stew. The plantain is usually fried, baked, or boiled and because of their shape, they are usually sliced into thin or thick chips.


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The ripened plantain or "platano maduro"

The Plantain starts out green then turns yellow-black. As it turns yellow, it becomes sweeter and is called a "platano maduro" or ripened plantain. The sweet plantain would not make a good addition to a smoothie, since it is bitter and doesn't taste good in it's raw form.

In my family, we usually had it as a side dish on the weekends. A popular breakfast in our house was eggs, thick cut ham, sauteed onions and "platanos maduros". The fried "platanos maduros" are crispy on the outside and soft and sweet on the inside. It is delicious!

It's one of those dishes that always reminds me of home. It brings balance to salty meals. These sweet plantains go great with: rice and beans, ham and eggs, or pernil (pork roast) and veggies. One doesn't need much oil and can use coconut oil to make the recipe healthier. They are really easy to make and the ingredients are simple. From my family to yours, enjoy!

Cook Time

Prep time: 2 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in: 17 min
Yields: Side dish for 2

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe plantain or platano maduro
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, can use olive oil, butter, or vegetable oil

Steps

  1. Peel and then cut the plantain diagonally, or cut while still unpeeled and then peel individual slices.
  2. Add the oil to the pan and wait until the oil is hot enough to make a tiny piece of plantain sizzle.
  3. Add and arrange the plantains so that they are not touching each other.
  4. Cook until the plantains are golden brown on each side.

Would you ever try sweet plantains?

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Comments

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    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      3 years ago

      I'm glad she likes them. Being on a boat though, I'm betting you go to the Caribbean?

    • GetitScene profile image

      Dale Anderson 

      3 years ago from The High Seas

      My wife absolutely loves these!

    • GetitScene profile image

      Dale Anderson 

      3 years ago from The High Seas

      My wife absolutely loves these!

    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      3 years ago

      Yes they are a type of banana. According to Wikipedia :A cooking plantain or plantain is one of the cultivated varieties (cultivars) of the genus Musa whose fruit is intended to be consumed only after cooking or other processing, rather than being eaten raw. The shoot is also used to make food and soups in various cuisines and the leaves and fibers are also used.

      When the fruits are intended to be eaten raw they are known as "dessert bananas" or just "bananas", although "banana" is also used as a collective term to include both bananas and plantains. There is no formal botanical distinction between the two. In some countries, there may appear to be a clear distinction between cooking plantains and dessert bananas, but in other countries, where many more cultivars are consumed, the differences are not so clear-cut and the distinction is not made in the common names used there. The difference between the two terms "plantain" and "banana", used here, is based purely on how the fruits are consumed. Plantains are typically eaten cooked and are usually large, angular and starchy, in contrast to dessert bananas, which are typically eaten raw and are usually smaller, more rounded and sugary. A subgroup of plantain cultivars may be distinguished as "true" plantains.

    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      3 years ago

      I'm Dominican too! Hola! I'm so glad you enjoyed your meal. Great job on executing the recipe :)

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 

      3 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      Are those bananas?

    • profile image

      Liz 

      3 years ago

      Amazing! Easy to follow steps and deicilous results. Gracias! now my Cuban boyfriend wants mangu everyday. I'm Dominican but never really knew how to make this, thank you so much.

    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      5 years ago

      Hi sister Madeinia! Nice to meet you :) Thanks you for the nice comment , and vote. I'm glad you like the recipe and I hope you enjoy it when you try it! Have a great day!

    • madeinla profile image

      Jolan 

      5 years ago from West Coast

      I love plantains & can't wait to try this out. My friends would make this dish all the time with plantains & ground beef. It was a delicious flavor combination! I look forward to trying them out with rice and beans. Yum!

      Upvoted - Useful & Awesome! Thank you!

    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      5 years ago

      Hi Ms Dora! I bet the ones you get in St. Kitts are great. Thank you for sharing a new way to cook them with me. Have a great day sister!

    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      5 years ago

      Thank you Alicia, for the picture compliment and for the nice comment. I hope you love it when you do try it! Have a great day, sis!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      5 years ago from The Caribbean

      I love plantains and so glad that I can get some really good ones now that I am back in the Caribbean. Thanks for sharing your plantain recipe. I also put them in the oven with the skin on and peel and cut after they are cooked.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I've never tried plantains before, although I've seem them in the stores. They do look nice in your photos. I'll try some soon.

    • Insightful Tiger profile imageAUTHOR

      Insightful Tiger 

      5 years ago

      LOL, deal! It's a really nice addition to many meals. Sweet plantains give a sweet balance to most any semi salty or sour meal. I usually only make it with spanish meals, but you can try them anytime if you find them. Thanks for stopping by and have a great day mentor!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Amazingly this is the 3rd hub about plantains I have read this week, and I'll bet I never read one before this week. Weird! This is a Southern dish, isn't it? I know we certainly don't see it prepared here in Washington.

      Anyway, no challenge on this one....I'll try it if I can find some plantains. :)

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