Perfectly crispy borders with a soft center is what you get when you fry Amarillos or ripe plantains.
Amarillos are another recipe to showcase how versatile plantains are. Not only can you make savory dishes like mofongo, tostones or plantain cups but also sweet ones. This recipe makes sweet fried plantains that are delicious. Depending on where you are, Amarillos will be called differently. In many Latin American countries, they are called tajadas while in others they are known as maduros.
What are amarillos?
Amarillos are the name given to fried sweet plantains in Puerto Rico. Amarillo is the Spanish translation for the color yellow. The name comes from the yellow color the plantains have when ripe. Even though they are commonly cooked as a vegetable, amarillos are a fruit.
How to pick the Perfect Amarillo?
Picking the perfect ripe plantain is not hard, just make sure it is not green. The key is to look for a plantain with black spots or bruises. The black spots do not mean that the plantain is rotting, what it means is that it is ripening. Just remember that the darker your plantain is the sweeter it will be.
How to ripen plantains ?
The best way to ripen a plantain for amarillos is to simply leave it on top of your counter at room temperature. I like to store my plantains in the oven but I don’t suggest it because it is easy to forget they’re there. You shouldn’t store your plantains in the fridge because the cold dramatically slows the ripening process. They will get black but not ripe. The only time you want to put your amarillos in the fridge is if it is too hot outside and you are going to use them in the next couple of days.
Can I make ahead?
Yes! Fried sweet plantains can be made ahead. Simply peel, cut and fry. What I will usually do is only fry them for just 1 minute. Then when I am ready to eat I will fry them for a couple of minutes to get the edges nice and crispy.
How to store sweet ripe plantains?
To store sweet plantains anywhere in your kitchen at room temperature is fine. Once cooked you can transfer them to an airtight container or freezer bag to store. Keep them in your fridge for no more than 3 days and in your freezer for up to 3 months.
How to serve?
Amarillos go deliciously well next to a steamy bowl of white rice and beans. You can have them as a side of any meat like my carne frita. The combination of the sweetness from the plantains and the savory of the meat is really good. A great way to eat maduros is by adding cheese on top. Some people eat them topped with cinnamon and sugar.
How to make fried sweet plantains
1. First, peel your plantain. Cut your Amarillo into diagonal pieces. You can also cut them in circles if you like or even into long slices.
2. Now fry your plantains for about 3 minutes on each side. This can change depending on how hot your oil is and even on how ripe it is. The sweeter it is the faster it will darken. You just want a nice golden brown color.
1. Ripe plantain- I used 2 ripe plantains.
2. Oil- I used vegetable oil. You can also use coconut oil.
Amarillos (ripe plantains)
- 2 sweet plantains
- ½ cup oil
- Cut the ends of your sweet plantain. Make a vertical line going down and peel. You can cut it into diagonal pieces, circles or long strips.
- In a large pan add your oil and set to medium heat. Fry for about 3 minutes on each side or until you see a nice golden brown color. Remove from oil and drain over a paper towel to remove any excess oil. Serve and enjoy.