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Banana Recipes How do you prepare your bananas? Share your banana and plantain recipes here. Banana bread, nuclear tostones, banana pudding, banana custard, banana pie, fried bananas, banana ice cream, banana butter, plantain soup, banana chips, banana wines, banana smoothies... and more!


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Old 08-08-2009, 04:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Tamal Platano, which are sweet plantain cakes, are a Southern Ecuadorean specialty - they're another great side-dish, especially for spicy meat dishes. You can make as many or as few of these cakes as you like; a good rule is that one large regular ripe plantain (the kind you get at the grocery store) makes two cakes. One ripe Hua Moa or Orinoco makes one cake.

For 4 cakes, you need:

2 large ripe plantains
1 egg
1/4 cup fresh cheese (Queso Fresco or Ricotta work very well)
1 tsp baking powder
a pinch of Cumin
a pinch of Nutmeg
4 clean Canna leaves, soaked in salt water OR a large banana leaf, quartered, and soaked in salt water.

Optional fillings:
A strip of crisp bacon
Black olives
Red pepper slices
Walnuts

How do I do it, you ask?

Peel the plantains and mash them together with the egg, cheese, powder, and spices. If the dough seems too liquid, add a bit of plantain or tapioca flour until it's a bit stiffer. Form this into four elongated balls.

Break the spines of the canna leaves, and place one ball on each. Fold the sides of the leaves in over the dough, then fold the tips of the leaves backwards. Secure with a bit of twine if you like - the weight of the dough inside the wrapper should keep them closed, however.

Lay these on the BBQ grill over low flame and close the lid. They're cooked when firm to the touch - they'll rise a bit while they're cooking and expand to fill the space inside the leaves.

Peel the cakes out of the canna leaves, and enjoy!

If you find these to be very heavy and want fluffier cakes, you should mash the bananas with the egg yolks, cheese, and spices, and beat the egg whites to a stiff peak, then fold these in to the banana mixture. This lightens the texture of the cakes considerably.

You can also steam these on the stovetop; this produces a different flavour since grilling adds the spicy, smoky flavour of charred canna to the cakes.
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Old 08-08-2009, 04:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

MMMmmm thanks Beth
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Old 08-08-2009, 05:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

thanks now i know what to do with my Montycristo Plantains when they fruit
how do you use the optional ingredients
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Old 08-08-2009, 05:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Just before you fold the leaves in, lay the bacon or whatever across the top of the dough.
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Old 08-08-2009, 05:29 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

I was thinking of left over pork and maybe some hot peppers. It would kind of be like mafungo(sp?) Side dish and main course in one.
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Old 08-09-2009, 02:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

I'm back from the market and about to make this happen right now!
I have all of the ingredients but nutmeg....is it a mission essential component?
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Old 08-09-2009, 02:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

No. It's a me-essential component because I like the flavour. I can't believe you don't have nutmeg in your spice cupboard!?!?!?! It's such an essential spice!
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Old 08-09-2009, 02:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Well, I was using it on my cappuccino til' I ran out....then discovered Cayenne cappuccino!
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Old 08-09-2009, 02:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill



Here's a visual how-to-fold-'em if anybody needs it.
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Old 08-09-2009, 03:55 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

(sighhh) My plantains were nice and black, but not ripe. What can I do now? Boil em? I sliced them very thin in hopes that I could then mash them but it didn't work and now they're too thin for tostones.
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Old 08-09-2009, 04:35 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

For unripe plantains...

Mangú (Mashed plantains) - Dominican Cooking
Or just make chips(chifles) out of them!!!

~Cheryl
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Old 08-09-2009, 05:11 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Or make Chifles - the method is under "Volquetero."
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Old 08-09-2009, 05:27 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

I never considered making Tamales out of Plantains or bananas. Thanks Beth!
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Old 08-09-2009, 06:01 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Oof, it's a very common practise down here - we have more bananas than anything else, really, except perhaps Yuca (which is not good tamale material...)

You're welcome, Alex!
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Old 08-09-2009, 06:08 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Thanks Beth, I'm going to make these tomorrow night with the leftover pork from tonights dinner that's still in the crockpot and smells delicious btw! Do you think it's better with Canna leaves?
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Old 08-09-2009, 06:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

I do - there's a distinct flavour, different from banana, that they impart. I grow a patch of Achira canna specifically to use its leaves in dishes like this one.
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Old 08-09-2009, 07:08 PM   #17 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Tamal Platano, on the Grill

Okay, I went with mangu because I had all the stuff here. Great save Cheryl! Thanks.
I'll be sure to squish the plantains to test em' next time. This'll give me a chance to pick up some nutmeg too.
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