Hubs and I went to Cuba about three years ago, back when I was still a pescatarian.
Neither of us spoke any Spanish at the time (I’m halfheartedly doing a Rosetta course now so know a few bits and pieces) and trying to explain our dietary preferences was tough.
“Sin carne! Pez? Pescado?” I said in vain to the overly enthusiastic waiter who nodded vigorously and returned 20 minutes later to slide a plate in front of me.
A brown, crispy lump of something stared back at me.
“What is this?” I whispered to hubs who shrugged and suggested that I slice it open and perform an autopsy to give us some clues.
It turned out to be deep fried fish, stuffed with a layer of cheese and, under that, some gristly meat.
So when I asked for something on the menu without meat, he’d brought me meat…inside a cheesy ball of fish.
Good job there was plenty of the ubiquitous Cuban side dish – old, reliable plantains.
Stuffed Plantain Dumplings (makes 6 small dumplings )
*adapted from Reza Mahammad
- 2 large, green plantains
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1 tbsp fresh coriander/cilantro
- 1 tsp ginger root, grated
- 1 green chili, de-seeded and finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Cut the plantains into thirds and, keeping the skin on, place in a pot of boiling water.
- Boil for 20 minutes until tender then remove and let cool. Peel off the skin and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Mash until smooth and season well.
- Combine the cilantro, ginger, chili, garlic, salt and cumin in a bowl.
- Grab a tbsp of the mixture and make a small well in the centre. Place about a tsp’s worth of the spice mix into the centre of the mashed plantain then roll up into a ball. Repeat until the plantain is used up.
- Add the coconut oil to a heavy bottomed frying pan. Heat then carefully add the plantain dumplings to the pan. Fry until golden, turning to ensure they get crispy on all sides.
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This post was also shared at Party Wave Wednesday