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Anything but Plain Plantain

Anything but Plain Plantain- web

A newbies experience

You may have heard of the plantain, even seen it in the grocery store, but until you cook with one, perception is one thing and reality is another.  Plantain experts will tell you; they are no doubt one of the most versatile fruits out there.  During early green stage of ripeness, they can pose as the all-American favorite potato, and once they’ve turned black- yes black- they are as sweet as can be and can be used in smoothies, baked goods or even custards.  We’ve asked Dole’s Registered Dietitian and Chef Melanie Marcus to give you her take on some of Dole’s new plantain recipes. 

“Before this challenge, plantains made me think of mofongo, tostones and chips from vacations past, to me they were bananas savory cousin.  But after this experiment, I realize there is so much more to them!  Here I tested three recipes and give you my experience.  First remember that plantains take much longer to ripen than bananas so if a recipe calls for sweet plantains, you may need to shop in advance to get them to the right stage.  I purchased them green and they took at least a week and a half to get to the sweetest stage of ripeness - black. 

What I love about these recipes is that they’ve transported plantains from my vacation memories to my everyday life.  And the best part is, no matter the stage of ripeness, there is always something to do with them!” 

Published August 2020

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