Dehydrating lets you satisfy your plantain fix on the go. Dried plantain chips last one to two months, like dried bananas. In addition to out-of-hand eating, you can grind dried plantains into flour and use it to replace up to one-fourth of the regular flour in baked goods.
Slice the tips off the ends of the plantain. Next, slice through the plantain skin lengthwise along the seams using a sharp paring knife.
Pry up a section of peel using the paring knife. Pull away the sections one by one. Slice away any sections of skin sticking to the flesh.
Slice the plantains crosswise into 1/8-inch-thick disks (about the width of a nickel). Alternatively, slice the plantains lengthwise into 1/8-inch-thick strips.
Dehydrating puts food right on the border of the food’s temperature “danger zone,” where bacteria thrive. A dip in citric acid prior to dehydrating the plantains kills any microbes present on the fruit and prevents oxidation.
Soak the plantain slices in a mixture of 1 quart of water mixed with 1 teaspoon of citric acid for 10 minutes.
Heat the oven to Warm. Prop the oven door open about 4 inches, using a towel as a wedge if necessary. If you have a convection oven, turn on the fan.
Transfer the plantain slices to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper using a slotted spoon, allowing them to drain first. Space the slices as close as possible without touching.
Set the plantains on the middle rack. Dry the plantains until they have a leathery texture, between 6 and 10 hours. Start checking the plantains after 6 hours.
Food dehydrators produce consistent results, and are a sound investment if you intend to dry food regularly. To dry plantains in a dehydrator, arrange the slices on the trays as close as possible without touching. Dry the plantains for 6 to 10 hours (start checking after 6 hours) at 140 degrees Fahrenheit. If your dehydrator doesn’t have temperature settings, set it to Medium.
Savory or sweet, you can go either way with plantains. A light sprinkle of brown sugar or salt and a well-chosen spice lets you put your own spin on these chips. Add the spices right before you place the place the plantains in the oven or dehydrator.
- Spices that pair well with brown sugar include allspice, cinnamon and cloves.
- Try ground ginger, cayenne pepper and salt for a take on the kelewele, a classic fried plantain dish.