Baobab Eats: Pastelón Sweet Plantain "Lasagna"
I’m not sure when I first experienced the deliciousness that is pastelón, but I do remember the first time I craved it. My younger sister, V had just come an event at work, she had bags filled with plantains and what looked like the ingredients to make a lasagna. She was so excited and couldn’t wait to get into the kitchen to cook. I remember sitting in my mom’s kitchen watching her slice, fry and layer this masterpiece and hoping it would be done before I had to get back to my own apartment, where nothing but the delivery menus were waiting. She is the real foodie in our family and loves to cook (and she needs to do it more for other, but that’s another story).
I also remember the taste. It would be years later, before I had the guts to make it myself but when I did, it was everything that I remembered.
It was one of the recipes I kept close to heart, but after posting a picture on Facebook, I received so many “OMG, what is this and how can I be down?” responses I thought it was time to share.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 lbs ground turkey
- 1 onion,minced
- 3 gloves garlic, minced
- 1 green pepper, minced
- ½ chopped cilantro
- 2 tsp adobo
- 2 tsp oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- ¼ cup tomato sauce
- 4 plantains, peeled and sliced into strips
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups white shredded cheese
- vegetable oil
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter square pan with 1 tbs of butter.
- Combine, turkey, onion, pepper, garlic, cilantro, adobo, and oregano . Mix well.
- Heat a large skillet at medium-high heat with 2 Tbs of olive oil, add meat mixture.
- Cook turkey until brown and of the juices bubble up, add bay leaves, and tomato sauce. Mix and let simmer for 10 minutes, set aside.
- Heat a large frying pan with vegetable oil, just enough to coat the bottom. Fry plantains for 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden and slightly crispy. Drain on a plate with paper towel, set aside.
- To assemble pastelón: Take your prepared square pan, start with a layer of plantains, then turkey, then a fistful of cheese, repeat. You want to finish with cheese and plantains. Beat 2 eggs, pour over the pastelón. Let it sit for a minute allowing the egg to soak in. Top off with just a bit more cheese.
- Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
Note: A more traditional recipe will include green stuffed olives, and raisins. I choose to omit both of these.