Plantain and Meat Pie
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and chopped
- 4 aji dulce (Caribbean chilies), cored and chopped, or 1/2 Italian frying pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
- 1 green or red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 pound ground round
- 1 1/4 cups canned crushed tomatoes
- 1/2 pound string beans, trimmed, quartered crosswise and boiled until tender
- 1/2 bunch cilantro, trimmed and minced
- 2 tablespoons pimiento stuffed olives, chopped
- 1 tablespoon capers
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 8 yellow plantains
- Vegetable oil
- 6 eggs, beaten
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, aji dulce, bell peppers and garlic, and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the meat and sauté, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until cooked through and the liquid has evaporated, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes, string beans, cilantro, olives and capers. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Sauté for 1 minute, then set aside.
Trim the ends of the plantains with a sharp knife, then make a few slits through the skin the length of each plantain. Use thumb to help peel the skin from the flesh. Trim off any woody fiber stuck to the plantains. Slice the plantains lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Pour vegetable oil into a large skillet to a depth of 1/2 inch and heat to 325 degrees F on a candy thermometer over medium heat. Fry the plantains in batches until slightly caramelized and golden yellow, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and season with salt.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Arrange a third of the plantains in a layer in a medium baking dish; cover with half the filling. Repeat the layers, ending with plantains. Pour the eggs over the plantains. Bake until the eggs are set, about 30 minutes.
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Recipe reprinted by permission of World Publication, LLC. All rights reserved.
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