Hindi Name: Vaayaka
They belong to the banana family but are firmer and not consumed raw. Green or under ripe plantains are the ones used in cooking and is a staple food in many tropical areas. The are eaten steamed or fried and called the potatoes of the Caribbean due to similarity of flavor.
The peel is hard to remove unlike a banana and must be peeled off using a knife. This process can stain clothes and the juice released is sticky and difficult to remove. Sprinkle oil on your hands before attempting to prepare plantains.
It is eaten boiled and mashed with flavors to make fillings. Sliced plantains are used in stir fries or eaten deep fried or as chips. Grated plantain after steaming can be tempered and consumed as a vegetable. It is also added to soups or consumed with a variety of flavors as a paste, and can also be eaten grilled. It is also boiled and blended to make a juice in Peru.
It is a storehouse of nutrients and can reduce high blood pressure. High in carbohydrates and dietary fiber, it is a power store. Plantains are also called food for brains and kidneys. They are fat free, cholesterol free and sodium free.