Plaintains, sometimes called cooking bananas, are a starchy cousin to the more common sweet or ‘dessert’ bananas. High in potassium and fibre, green plantains must be cooked before eating though more ripe yellow ones can be consumed raw. Plantains are a staple food in many parts of the world including Africa, Central America, the CaribbeanIslands and northern, coastal parts of South America. Many cultures have similar recipes for deep-frying thinly sliced plantains; this version bakes them for a slightly healthier take on this popular snack or side dish.
2 plantains – look for ones with green skins, not yellow with black spots
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
½ teaspoon chili powder
* note you can play around with the seasonings; cumin, cinnamon and cayenne are all good on these chips
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Peel plantains by cutting across the stem end then peeling down with a knife.
- Slice thinly (1/8”, if possible). A mandoline may make this job easier, if you have one.
- Put plantain slices in a bowl. Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil over top. Sprinkle seasonings over and toss gently with your fingers so each slice is well coated.
- Drizzle the remaining teaspoon of olive oil on a baking sheet and rub around to spread evenly.
- Spread plantain slices in a single layer on the prepared cookie sheet.
- Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, turning slices after about 6 minutes.
- Watch the chips closely after you turn them as they can burn quickly. Remove from oven when they are uniformly golden and transfer to a cooling rack.
- Chips are best eaten immediately. If you need to make them a day or two ahead, underbake them slightly then re-crisp in a 375F oven for 3 – 4 minutes on a baking sheet.
Makes 2 – 3 cups of chips (depending upon the size of your plantains).