Plantain Rolls/Raw Banana Rolls….sounding interesting, no? For me too. Actually I also never ever had any idea of rolls of plantains or raw bananas but I got to discover them fortunately or it’s the upshot of my learning cooking, acquaintance of new cooking tips & techniques and a bit of creativity. Stuffed Plantain/raw banana rolls are stuffed with a savoury peas-filling and have a mildly spiced & seasoned crunchy-coating of raw/unripe bananas.
Here we have three words- Raw Banana/Unripe Banana, Plantain and Banana. If I go in depth of all three terms then the Yellow Bananas/Bananas are the sweet ripe fruits and eaten raw or in some other salads, pies, or may be cooked in various desserts etc. Huh…what’s special here, everyone knows it. I know that but there are some differences which I was required to clear to myself and also to everyone who’s reading it. Then second one is Plantain. Plantains are said as cousin of bananas but are neither bananas nor unripe/raw bananas. Plantains are said as large sized more stiff, firm, more starchy and less/minimal sugary banana-like fruit. They are not at all edible if consumed raw and not palatable even when they are ripe. They can only be consumed when cooked. Now it’s turn for unripe banana or you say green raw banana (no matter, large or small). Are they same as Plantain or they are Plantain or the name ‘Plantain’ can be given to unripe/raw bananas? I am not sure about this fact because this time for this recipe the plantains or raw/unripe green bananas I used were not large sized like plantains but comparatively smaller ones like medium green unripe bananas. However I am trying to confirm that on being cooked/boiled, both green unripe bananas and plantains would be similar in texture. Please confirm me the fact. If I say, the ones I used would be unripe/raw green bananas and not plantains then also there is another query that arises for the variety of unripe bananas was used. There would be so many varieties but there are 2 more common varieties/kind of unripe bananas I am familiar of (irrespective of size but on the basis of texture) – 1st kind of unripe banana is when cooked/boiled, it is gooey/soft in the middle whereas 2nd is more firm, stiff, starchy in middle also like outside (very slight slimy).
Behind telling you all this only had an objective to clear the kind of raw/unripe banana/plantain I used for making rolls here. I had used the latter one, 2nd one. No particular choice to go for it but those I had with me in the pantry. Now one thing you all genius people, more familiar with their cultivation/varieties, have to tell me that what I should call them, the unripe bananas or Plantains. For this post I am going with Plantain- a term to green medium sized unripe/raw bananas (Kacche/Kachche Kele).
The idea of making plantain rolls just struck my mind when a bunch of plantains was waiting for its turn to get used in some dish. But this time I didn’t want that same kind of fried fritters with them, which has been a common dish of plantains at my home. I wanted something new with it. For a while ago I had watched a Culinary TV show “Food ka Mood” on Zee Khana Khazana where Chef Gautam Mehrishi had talked of a technique of making stuffed Keema Kebabs. Above that whole recipe and ingredients, how he stuffed mince sheet and made slender kebabs, was very noticeable. The technique with which he did all that was very enticing and I was waiting for the mince to be bought soon so that I could apply and see the outcome. But before the mince could be bought I had these raw bananas. Do they also resemble mince, I don’t think so. However still I tried to make a link somewhere and thought to apply that technique with them. But what about stuffing? I couldn’t recollect even the ingredients of that recipe except that technique. Instead I discovered my own recipe of Peas stuffed Plantain Rolls. Peas and Plantain complement each other very well in flavour. So I went for it. I applied that technique and what I got, exclusively created appetizing “The Stuffed Plantain Rolls- Femme-style”. Wondering what the technique is? Go ahead; now, just can’t wait to share the recipe with you, let’s get on to the recipe quickly-
Time Taken-For Preparation-25-30 min
For Cooking– 30 min
Frozen/Fresh Peas- 1/2-¾ cup (Very Coarsely Ground)
Cilantro/ Coriander leaves- 1 tbsp (roughly chopped)
Garlic- 4 pods (finely chopped)
Ginger- 1 tsp (minced/grated)
Green Chillies- 2 tsp (chopped)
Garam Masala- ½ tsp
Roasted Cumin Powder- 1 tsp
Salt- to taste
Oil- 2 tsp
For Coating/Rolls’ Sheet
Plantain or Raw/unripe bananas (kacche Kele) – 6 small-medium sized or 3 large sized (Peeled, boiled & mashed smoothly)
Bread Crumbs- ¾-1 cup
Red Chilli Powder- ¼ tsp
Turmeric- ½ tsp
Dry Mango Powder- ½ tsp or Chaat Masala- ¼ tsp (I used Mango Powder)
Salt- to taste (adjusted/a bit less)
Oil- 2 tsp to mix + some to grease hands
Oil- For Shallow Frying
Clear Wrap or clear foil
Oil- as needed for greasing
Steps to follow-
- Wash and Peel off raw bananas/plantains. Boil them in enough water until they become tender. Meanwhile they are boiling; coarsely grind peas (coarsely here means, just for few whirls so they get split) and do all the chopping needed.
- When they are boiled, strain them and let them cool down to room temp and mash them smoothly either manually with masher or grind smoothly in grinder (little tidbits if left therein, is fine. I did latter one)
- Place a wok on flame, add oil to heat up. Add in Garlic and Ginger and sauté for a while on medium flame.
- Add green chillies, sauté for 3-4 seconds, and then instantly add crushed peas.
- Mix in Garam Masala, roasted cumin powder and salt. Stir cook for few minutes.
- Give a final touch by mixing coriander/cilantro leaves. Stuffing is ready.
- Now let’s work on the Rolls’ Coating. Mix all the ingredients mentioned under “For Coating/Rolls’ Sheet” in the mashed raw bananas and grease your hands with some oil to make mashed dough like mixture.
- Place the enough large clear wrap/foil on a clean solid board, brush it evenly with some oil. Evenly spread and pat the mashed raw banana mixture to form a rectangular sheet (no cracks), which should be as thin as possible (its length and breadth you can adjust on your own).
- Now evenly spread the peas-stuffing mixture in the middle leaving all four edges & sides.
- Now hold the two corners of the clear wrap (that are towards you) and give a gentle thrust/push to roll it in.
- After one push forward, press it cylindrically over the clear wrap to tighten up the stuffing and again give a gentle thrust/push forward holding the corners of clear wrap, to roll in full.
- This Roll will be a bit delicate so go gently with it. Cut this long roll in smaller rolls of 1-2 inch length, very gently. (Don’t press, just run knife down moving it back n forth, If some peas stuffing is falling out; no worries, put it in again).
- Heat oil in a deep pan for shallow frying. Transfer these rolls in it and keep them frying without flipping until its one side is properly golden-brown. Flip gently (use other ladle as support for convenience if you require) and fry other side too till it also turns golden brown (in flipping slight tidbits may fall out but it’s obvious, else whole stuffing will be bound properly in rolls). Do the same for all rolls.
- Take out and serve garnished. Enjoy with Tomato Ketchup/Salsa or sauce of your choice.
If you liked the recipe of the dish, you might also like Kacche Kele Ke Cutlets (Raw Bananas/Plantain Cutlets)
1. If you find the dough is very delicate and slimy, you can add more breadcrumbs or cornflour (yellow one not white because, yellow gives more crunch & pliability too. I didn’t feel the need to use it, if you wish you can, to make it bendy, more stiff and manageable) I didn’t feel any need of adding more breadcrumbs; for me, the mentioned quantity was sufficient (results may differ on the variety of plantain or raw/unripe banana used).
- Fried Plantain (Patacones) (paleobcn.wordpress.com)
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- Cinnamon Plantain “Chips” (wholefoodrunner.wordpress.com)
- Plantain Fantacy (easternspices.wordpress.com) Would love to hear from you!