Forgive me yet another post in homage to our tropical vacation; the kids were very enthusiastic to buy plantains, and I have watched them turn from green to brown these last few days. I needed to take action, and thought the resulting cinnamon sugar chips were worth sharing. Since I know not everyone will either have plantains on hand or have the inclination to pick some up, I also tried this recipe out with a standard banana. All good, if perhaps just a little less crisp.
As I babbled about in my Plantain Chip Chicken post, plantains are a lot starchier and less sweet than bananas. This makes them ideal for frying, but I didn’t want to go to town with oil today. Instead, I went for an oven method; my chips did not get as crisp as they would have deep-fried, but were delicious nonetheless.
I *thought* I was being clever in putting a sweet spin on things, and the boy and I agreed the flavor was divine. When the girl got home from school, though, she claimed a salty option would have been more her speed. Then she proceeded to chomp down a homemade chocolate chip cookie, which was clearly sweet and not salty. Hmmmph. It was all good in the end, though, as the boy was more than happy to finish off her portion of plantains.
One benefit to using the tropical fruit is that its texture makes it much easier to thinly slice. Obviously, the thinner the slices the crisper the chips**. Coconut oil seemed the perfect choice to use, and if you want to go more savory feel free to simply use some salt and perhaps serve these babies up with a little guacamole. Just the thought of that pairing has made me want to buy more plantains…
Baked Cinnamon Sugar Plantain Chips
2-3 ripe plantains (I used 2 plantains and 1 banana)
3 tbs. granular sweetener of choice (I used xylitol)
1.5 tsp. cinnamon
2 tbs. melted coconut oil
juice of 1/2 lemon (to prevent browning)
Preheat oven to 400. Thinly slice plantains. In a medium bowl, combine sweetener, cinnamon and melted oil. Toss in plantain slices and thoroughly coat with mixture. Squirt in lemon juice and toss again.
Spread slices in an even layer on a baking sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes, then flip. Bake for another 5-15 minutes, depending on how crisp you want them to get (I probably did mine for about 25 minutes total, and in hindsight would have baked them longer).
Allow to cool before eating, as they will crisp even more once out of the oven.
**Speaking of thin slices, a mandoline would do just the trick for the task. On that subject I’m pleased to announce the winner of the OXO Handheld Mandoline: Dawn, whose favorite nacho toppings are “black beans, cheese, cilantro and tons and tons of Franks hot sauce with a side of guacamole…yum!” A woman who likes things spicy like me… love it!