Dana Slatkin

Sweet and Salty Fried Plantains

Fried PlantainsThough most Angelenos aren’t familiar with the historic significance of Cinco de Mayo, it’s sure a good excuse for a fiesta. The holiday that originally commemorated the Mexican victory of 1862 against French occupation has actually become a day to celebrate Mexican heritage and, of course, cuisine. Here in Los Angeles, where Latino culture prominently flavors our city’s melting pot, the streets will come alive on May 5th in vibrant hues of red, white and green.

Here’s what’s going to be on my table (though not for long) for our family festivities…crispy plantain fries (“platanos”), served with black beans, sour cream, and chunky guacamole. Plantains are the starchier relative of the banana family, commonly enjoyed throughout Mexico, as well as in Latin and Central America, the Caribbean and other tropical areas. They are often deep-fried twice (“tostones”), but I prefer them simply sautéed until crisp and sprinkled with salt, cinnamon and sugar.

Plantains happen to be a good source of potassium, vitamins A and C, and dietary fiber. But they are also just lip-smacking tasty. With a pot of 4-Pepper Tortilla Soup, you’ll have a simple and delicious meatless dinner—perfect for kicking off the month of May or giving some greasy goodness to your amor.

Don’t forget to enter your salsa recipe in our May cooking contest!

Photo credit: bluejeangourmet.com

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  1. nickey g canton amador says:

    i prefer to sauteed them in sugar, cinnamon and butter. tastes much better than oil. less greasy

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