Sweet fried plantains or platanos maduros are heavenly when they’re prepared properly. It’s pretty hard to mess them up, but then anything’s possible. If you’re interested in preparing these delicious bites of warm, sweet goodness that melt in your mouth, we can help. Follow this insanely easy recipe for instant gratification, and you’ll be wondering why you haven’t been making them all along. They’re a great side dish for countless dishes you’re probably already cooking, so try them tonight and see for yourself just how easy they are to make at home.
Where to begin
So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and spend a whole 15 – 20 minutes experimenting with easy recipes like platanos maduros. Great! First, you’ll need three or four large, over ripe plantains to start with. The skins should be at the very least dark brown, bordering on black, and they should be obviously soft, so you may need to buy them several days in advance. You’ll also need roughly 1/2 to 2/3 cup of Snow Cap lard or your favorite brand of shortening, 1/2 cup of brown or raw sugar, and a medium frying pan or skillet.
Start by warming the lard or shortening in your frying pan or skillet on medium-high heat. Next, begin peeling the plantains and discard the skins. Now, cut them diagonally in inch-thick slices at roughly a 45-degree angle. You can put your sugar in a gallon size Ziploc baggie and then add the cut plantains, seal and shake, or you can roll them in sugar in a shallow bowl or dish. It’s up to you how you coat your platanos maduros.
Once the oil is warm enough to begin cooking in, add your plantains. Tip: if you’re unsure if the temperature is right, try sprinkling a very small drop of water into the oil to see if it sizzles. If it does, you’re good to go. Be very cautious how much water you sprinkle into the pan and how close you are, because it has a tendency to splash back up and can burn you badly. Be careful! After adding the plantains, you then need to cook them for approximately two minutes per side before reducing the heat to low and allowing them to get a lovely gooey brown while stirring occasionally to finish the caramelizing process for a few additional minutes.
After they’ve reached the desired level of cookedness, remove them from the pan and place them on a plate with a sheet of paper towel to cool for a moment or two before serving as a side, adding to your main dish, or to be enjoyed as a yummy snack solo with a drizzle of sweet cream. And there you have it. You’ve just made your first batch of platanos maduros.