Until recently, I had never tried plantains. I always saw them in the vegetable aisle and knew nothing about them other than they grow in the tropics. A friend of mine who is Cuban (and knows all about plantains) invited me over and made smashed plantains. I didn't really know what to think, other than I really liked it. It looks like a banana, but is starchy, is not sweet and definitely does not peel like a banana. Plantains are Whole 30 compliant, so a few months ago I decided to take a stab at plantain chips. I wanted something crunchy but not sweet - the plantain chip fit the bill perfectly. These are now my go to snack and are really easy to make (so long as you have a mandolin to slice them equally). I will use these in place of tortilla chips to eat guacamole.
1 medium or large plantain, very green
1/2 cup of coconut oil
salt to taste
Cut off both ends of the plantain, and score cuts length-wise from one end to the other. Unlike a banana that peels very easily, a plantain has very tough skin to protect the fruit. Peel the plantain along the scores you cut into the plantain.
Once the plantain is peeled, slice using the thinnest setting on the mandolin. The thinner the slice, the easier it will crisp up and turn into a chip. In a non-stick pan, heat up the coconut oil about 2 tablespoons at a time over medium/medium-high heat. Place 7-8 slices of plantain into the oil, and flip when they begin to turn golden (about 2 minutes), then cook another 2 minutes. You'll know it is time to flip the chips once the pale plantain starts to turn golden. Keep repeating this until all your raw chips are cooked.
MEG'S TIP: If your plantain is overly ripe, it will be soft like a banana. The firmer (and more green) the plantain, the better the plantain chip will turn out. Plus, the more yellow and soft it turns, the sweeter the plantain.
As soon as you remove the plantain from the pan, set it on a cutting board with paper towels to allow the excess oil to drain. Immediately salt the chips to taste as soon as you take them out. Once they start to dry, the oil will not stick to the chips. Allow to cool and enjoy!
Meg's Afterthoughts: These are best served right after you cook them. If you have access to a toaster oven the next day, they reheat okay, but like most things that are fried, the oil used will make it soft after a few hours.