"It’s worth seeking out the big starchy plantain bananas to create some of the best chips in the universe. Loved in parts of Africa, South East Asia and the West Indies, plantains are delicious sliced on a mandolin with their skin on, popped into acidulated water and then fried to golden. Colombian chef Oscar Espinosa shared his techniques and predicts that once you try this recipe, it will be a staple for entertaining or simply to have as delicious snacks. A good guacamole is a source of velvety delight and his version is simple and easy." Maeve O'Meara, Food Safari Earth
Easy and fresh, this spicy guacamole dip and homemade chips are perfect to serve at a summer BBQ.
- 1 litre warm water
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 2 tbsp salt
- 2 plantains, ends removed, unpeeled
- 2 litres vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Avocado and habanero dip
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 habanero chilli, seeded and finely chopped
- 1½ avocados
- 1 tomatillo, grated
- 2 spring onions, white part only, finely chopped
- juice of 2 limes
- 1 stalk coriander, leaves and stalks, finely chopped
- salt, to taste
- ½ tomato, finely chopped
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
To make the dip, pound together all the ingredients except the tomato until you have a chunky texture. Spoon into a serving bowl and sprinkle the chopped tomato over the top just before serving.
Place the warm water, garlic and salt in a large bowl and whisk until the salt dissolve. Add 2 litres cold water (make sure it’s cold) and set aside. Using a mandolin, thinly slice the plantains lengthwise, about 2-3 mm thick and drop them into the brine as you go. Soak for 5 minutes, then drain and pat dry on paper towel.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan or deep-fryer to 170°C. Deep-fry the plantains, in batches for 2 minutes or until light golden. Make sure you submerge them every now and then to ensure they cook evenly. Drain on paper towel, season with salt and serve immediately with the avocado and habanero dip.
Photography by Sharyn Cairns. Styling by Lee Blaylock. Food preparation by Emma Warren. Creative concept by Belinda So.