Caramelized Plantains

Food Allergies and World Travel may not be the simplest combo, but in our case – in our stay-at-home in our little cottage case – food allergy and multi-cultural cuisine work well together!

Cameroon is Right Here

Since we’ve been talking about Cameroon, Africa, lately, I thought a recipe for a side dish we had at the Bread for Life Banquet would be in order.


3-4 ripe plantains (or you can use not-as-very-ripe bananas)

4 TBS oil

a little bit of brown sugar

  • if the plantains aren’t ripe enough, they will have a slightly bitter flavor and a dry texture. The ones used in this batch were a bit too unripe for my taste.  (Edit Based on Further Research:  skin of the plantains should be quite black before using.)
  •  if the bananas are too ripe, they will have an overly banana flavor and a mushy texture.

Been there, done both. Just passin’ on my whoops-es so you can have successes!


Use a sharp small knife to slice open the skin.

Opening the peel

Pull the plantain out like unloading cargo from a canoe.

Plantains Out of Their Skin

Slice the plantains the short way on an angle, so they make ovals.

Sliced on the oval

Or slice the long way, so they look like wide eels, as if on the sushi shelf at your local Japanese restaurant. Then chop those puppies in half so they aren’t so very long.

Cut the Eel Way


Heat the oil (medium high or a wee bit lower) ‘til it sizzles when you put a drop of water in it. (Be careful, it will spatter when you do this.)

The Sizzle Begins

Carefully place the plantains in the hot oil. Cook for oh, 3-5 minutes on each side. Sprinkle on a little brown sugar as they begin to brown, so they get a wee bit caramelized.

Ok, I like them A LOT CARAMELIZED, so I sprinkle more than a little brown sugar. 🙂

Place on a paper towel to soak up any extra oil.

Carmelized Plantains

Sprinkle with whatever you like: more sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon. I’ve read that some in Cameroon top their fried plantains with a dash of Tabasco. I’m not that gastro-ly brave, but I’ve been known to squeeze a little fresh lime juice over them.

Bon Appetite! (Did you know? French is an official language in Cameroon.)


I like food of the world and we have food restrictions.

What is your favorite recipe from another country/culture?


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Copyright @2012SuzanneBroadhurst


Thoughts ... Insights ... Questions?