Make it. Eat it. Love it.
They could have just been unripened bananas, but luckily they were what I had anticipated. Plantains. Beautiful green plantains. They were sitting piled in the Tel Aviv shuk. Only one vendor had them and he was very proud to let us know that in fact they were bananas close cousin.
Living in Israel you get used to not having certain produce or products at your disposal and you learn to live without some of these delicious things. However every now and then you will be surprised at the hidden gems you can find hiding in some markets and specialty stores. And, when you do find them, you jump at the opportunity.
Plantain chips are a snack I always loved and would happily eat everyday. I thought that it making a batch would be a wonderful use for my newest find.
These chips are the most perfect snack. Baked with a blend of cayenne pepper, chili powder, brown sugar and cocoa powder they become crunchy, sweet, spicy and terribly addicting. And, since they are baked and not fried you wont feel guilty about eating them all either.
The key to getting crispy chips is using plantains that have not ripened yet. The greener, the better. If your plantains are yellow or have brown spots you are better off using them in a different dish or making fried plantains. If you try to bake them you could end up with a batch of burnt plantain chips that stick to your baking tray.
I found that the best way to peel plantains is to cut off the tips and then make a shallow cut along the ridges. Then peel the plantains under running water (it will make it easier). When slicing the plantains, it is best to use a mandoline to get even slices.
4 green plantains, peeled and sliced thin
4 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
Juice from one lime, divided
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 400F and grease baking sheet with cooking spray.
In a large bowl toss plantain slices with olive oil and half of the lime juice.
Spread plantain slices in a single layer on baking sheet and sprinkle with half of the spice mixture.
Bake plantains for 8 minutes and the flip chips and sprinkle with remaining spice mixture.
Bake plantains for another 8 minutes or until crisp.
*Be sure to watch plantain chips after you flip them. They can burn easily! Do not let them brown.
Serve fresh with remaning lime juice squirted on top.
Can be kept up to 2 days.