Geek Chef

I cook, I talk, I geek

what to do with old bananas? October 1, 2007

Filed under: Food — geekchef @ 3:12 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

I have a few things in mind…

Plantain Empanadas

1 small Poblano chile, roasted, peeled and seeded
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup cold Refried Black Beans
2 ripe plantains, unpeeled
2 ripe bananas, peeled
1 teaspoon salt
2 scallions, white and some green parts, thinly sliced
1/4 cup peanut oil
1 cup Crema
1/4 cup grated Anejo, Romano or Feta cheese
1/4 cup grated Manchego or Feta cheese
Creme Fraiche or sour cream for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut a lengthwise slit in each plantain and set it on a baking sheet. Bake until the flesh is thoroughly soft and oozing through the slit, 40 to 50 minutes, Set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, make the stuffing: Finely dice the poblano chile. Combine with beans, scallions, cheeses and pepper in a mixing bowl. The stuffing can be made up to a day in advance. Peel, trim and discard any tough ends from the plantains. Combine the plantains, banana and salt into a food processor and pulse until a smooth puree is formed, or mix until just blended. Be careful not to overwork the dough, or it will become too starchy. Wrap in plastic and chill about 2 hours.

To assemble the empanadas, roll 2 tablespoons of the dough lightly between your palms to form a ball and flatten to the size and shape f a tortilla. Place about 1 teaspoon of the bean stuffing on half of the dough circle and fold over to enclose, pressing the edges to seal. Place the stuffed empanadas on a platter and chill at least 30 minutes or as long as a day. (Stuffed empanadas can also be frozen).

To cook the empanadas, heat the peanut oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Fry 4 to 6 empanadas, at a time, shaking the pan constantly, about 1 minute per side or until dark brown all over. (If they darken too quickly, as they may if very ripe plantains were used, lower the flame slightly). Drain on paper towels. Serve hot with Crema, Creme Fraiche or sour cream for dipping.

Bananas Foster Ice Cream

4 tablespoons butter, cut into cubes
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 ripe bananas, peeled and cut lengthwise into halves
1/4 cup banana liqueur
1/2 cup dark rum (recommended: Myers’s)
1 quart cream
8 egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar

In a large pan, melt the butter. Stir in the brown sugar and cinnamon. Add the bananas and baste them with the syrup for 2 minutes. Pull the saute pan off the burner. Carefully add the banana liqueur and rum. Place the pan back on the stove and shake the pan a couple of times. The pan should flame, if not, ignite the pan with a match. Shake the pan back and forth until the flame dies, basting the bananas continuously. Remove from the heat and cool completely. In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, add the banana mixture and puree until smooth. Set aside.
In another saucepan, add the cream and bring to a gentle boil. In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks and granulated sugar together until pale yellow. Whisk 1 cup of the hot cream into the egg mixture and mix thoroughly. In a steady stream, slowly add the egg-cream mixture to the hot cream remaining in the saucepan. Continue to cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Do not allow the mixture to boil. Remove from the heat and cool completely. Whisk the banana puree into the cream mixture and mix thoroughly. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill thoroughly. Process in an electric ice cream machine according to manufacturers’ directions.

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