Plantains aren’t necessarily the most beautiful of fruits. Flatter and longer than normal bananas, they have a milder flavour at any given stage of ripeness. Plantains are often cooked like potatoes because they contain less sugar and more starch than other bananas. Plantains are more a vegetable than a fruit.
Plantains should be firm and not mushy or cracked. They can be purchased at any colour stage, green, yellow, or black, depending on how you want to eat them.
Store plantains at room temperature to promote ideal ripening. A higher storage temperature will speed the ripening process. Do not refrigerate, as plantains perish if stored below 8°C.
Plantains become sweeter as they ripen. Green, unripe plantains are firm and starchy – a tasty potato substitute, usually boiled and mashed. Even fried they are very delicious (“patacones or “tajadas” in South America). Yellow plantains are sweeter and delicious baked, fried or mashed. Ripe, black plantains are very sweet and soft: to be enjoyed fresh from the hand or fried as a dessert.
|Average per 100 g*|
|of which sugars||15.0 g|
|of which saturates||0.1 g|
|Vitamin C||18.4 mg|
|* Average values according to US Department of Agriculture|