Friday, July 17, 2009
I'm still in my summer Filipino treats mode. You already saw my Sago at Gulaman concoction. If not, go check it out after you finish reading today's delicious dish. I had bought a couple of plantains from the grocery a couple days ago. They looked fresh and there was only a few left. I took the opportunity to take 'em. You want to get them just right before they turn ripe. It's the best kind when you fry these puppies. Banana cue is another common treat found from street vendors in the Philippines.
They are plantains that are fried with brown sugar giving it a firm caramel coat. Kind of like candied bananas or almost like a bananas foster in a way. In the Philippine language, a banana is called saging (sa-ging). It's close relative treat is the turon (to-ron), which is a plantain and a piece of jack fruit wrapped in an egg roll wrapper, fried and coated with brown sugar. The banana cue is similar but it's strictly just the banana and served on a skewer. Easy portability. I'll be making the turon soon.
You'd think that frying a banana would cook it inside and out. Yes and no. The key is to just brown the outer layer, then sealing it with a brown sugar coating until it caramelizes. The outside of it has a nice firm sugar crust. When you bite into it, it's got a little itty-bitty crunch then you get into the nice, yellow, soft and warm inside of the plantain. My mom once told me she used to eat these with her classmates during recess when she was a little child.
I didn't put any time measurements as you need to keep an eye out on them. You got to get a feeling for them while they cook. I think that's the secret to making delicious banana cues. Can you see that chunky piece of crystalized sugar?? Those are the best parts. It goes really well with ice cream.
I could eat these all day. Have a piece of fruit while satisfying the sweet tooth, what could be better than that, right?
2 Large Plantain (nearly ripe)
4 Tbsp brown sugar
Oil (canola, vegetable, peanut = You choice)
Remove the skins of the plantains, cut them in half.
In a frying pan, heat some oil. Just enough to go half way up the banana. When the oil is really hot, carfully drop in the plantains. You'd want the outside to have a slight browning. Turn, if needed.
When the bananas have browned slightly all around, sprinkle the brown sugar. You may add more. Keep an eye while they fry you want the sugar to melt and coat the plaintains. Roughly 5-10min. turn them ocassionaly to cook all around.
When the sugar has completely coated the plantains and looks firm, remove from then oil and insert a skewer lengthwise. Two will fit on one stick.